FDA determinations for pregnant and nursing women

The following table shows FDA-approved psoriasis treatments and their category for use by pregnant and nursing women.


Key to FDA categories
B Studies with animals have not found risk to the fetus but no studies have been done in humans.
C Safety is not substantiated by animal or human studies.
X Risk in pregnancy outweighs any benefits

Generic nameBrand nameFDA categoryComments
Acitretin Soriatane X Causes birth defects. Absolutely avoid.
Adalimumab Humira B Long-term animal studies showed no harm. No human studies conducted. Avoid unless necessary.
Alefacept Amevive B Long-term animal studies showed no harm. No human studies conducted. Avoid unless necessary. Effective Nov. 16, 2011, Astellas Pharma U.S. Inc. voluntarily discontinued promotion, manufacturing, distribution and sales of Amevive.
Anthralin C No clear evidence of birth defects. Avoid unless necessary.
Calcipotriene Dovonex C No clear evidence of birth defects. Avoid unless necessary.
Calcipotriene and
betamethasone
dipropionate
Taclonex C No clear evidence of birth defects. Avoid unless necessary.
Calcitriol Vectical ointment C No clear evidence of birth defects. Avoid unless necessary.
Cyclosporine C No clear evidence of birth defects. Avoid unless necessary.
Efalizumab Raptiva C No clear evidence of birth defects. Avoid unless necessary. On April 8, 2009, Genentech, Inc. announced a voluntary withdrawal of Raptiva from the U.S. Market, this drug is no longer available. Please contact your dermatologist for further information.
Etanercept Enbrel B Long-term animal studies showed no harm. No human studies conducted. Avoid unless necessary.
Infliximab Remicade B Long-term animal studies showed no harm. No human studies conducted. Avoid unless necessary.
Methotrexate X Even small doses can cause defects in first trimester. Absolutely avoid.
PUVA C No clear evidence of birth defects, although PUVA affects DNA. Avoid unless necessary.
Tazarotene Tazorac X Risk of internal absorption. Absolutely avoid.
Topical steroids C No clear evidence of birth defects. Avoid unless necessary.
UVB Safe during pregnancy. May cause skin discoloration.

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