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Are amikacin injections safe in pregnancy?

Q: I am a 22 years old woman and had urine infection. The doctor gave me ten amikacin injections (twice daily) for five days. In addition, she also gave me pyridium and gatifloxacin. But after some time, I came to know that I am pregnant. Does amikacin injection and other medicines have any side effects? Does it affect the growth of a baby at early stage of pregnancy?

A:Amikacin crosses the placenta and thus reaches the foetus. There is evidence of uptake of amikacin by the foetal kidney resulting in damage (probably reversible) to immature parts (of the kidney). In addition, 8th cranial nerve damage has also been reported following foetal exposure to the drug. Thus amikacin is potentially toxic to the kidney and hearing organ of the foetus. Therefore amikacin should be administered to women of child bearing age only after a negative pregnancy test. Gatifloxacin is also not permitted to be given to pregnant women though the chances of injury to the foetus are far less. Please discuss the matter with a competent gynaecologist for counselling.

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