Fetal development is a complex process. At different stages of development, different aspects can be influenced by external factors (e.g., teratogenic drugs, alcohol, smoking, maternal stress, and altered nutrition). Among women in whom cancer is diagnosed during pregnancy, factors such as maternal illness, diagnostic tests, cancer treatment, and increased levels of maternal stress can negatively influence fetal development.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration published a final rule today that sets standards for how information about using medicines during pregnancy and breastfeeding is presented in the labeling of prescription drugs and biological products. The new content and formatting requirements will provide a more consistent way to include relevant information about the risks and benefits of prescription drugs and biological products used during pregnancy and breastfeeding.