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In studies on Neupogen and pregnancy, the drug increased the risk of low fetal weight, miscarriages, and developmental problems when it was given to pregnant rabbits and rats. However, a healthcare provider can still prescribe Neupogen to pregnant women if he or she believes that the benefits outweigh the possible risks. Be sure to notify your healthcare provider if you are taking Neupogen and pregnancy occurs.
Neupogen® (filgrastim) is a medication used to increase the level of certain white blood cells (called neutrophils) that are important in protecting the body against infections. In animal studies that looked at the effects of Neupogen during pregnancy, the drug increased the risk of miscarriages and other problems.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a pregnancy category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category C is given to medicines that have not been studied in pregnant humans but do appear to cause harm to the fetus in animal studies. Also, medicines that have not been studied in any pregnant women or animals are automatically given a pregnancy Category C rating.
Neupogen was given a pregnancy Category C classification because of problems in animal studies. Giving Neupogen to pregnant rabbits increased the risk of miscarriages, low fetal weight, and various developmental problems. In rats, Neupogen increased the risk of low birth weight and decreased the survival of the newborn rats.
However, it is important to note that animals do not always respond to medicines the same way that humans do. Therefore, a pregnancy Category C medicine may be given to a pregnant woman if the healthcare provider believes that the benefits to the pregnant woman outweigh any possible risks to the unborn child.