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Is it safe to use so many drugs during pregnancy?

Q: I am 11 weeks pregnant. I had two problems - hair loss and acne on my face. For the hair loss I used a natural capsule containing: L-cystiene 100mg; Inositol 125 mg; D-biotine 100mcg ; Zinc (as gluconate) 15mg; Paramino benzoic acid 30mg; Iodine 150 mcg; Copper 2mg; Calcium (as pantothenate 100mg); Niacin 35 mg; Choline citrate 125 mg; Iron (as gluconate) 15 mg; Folic acid 400 mcg; Cyanocobolamine (B12) 1 mcg and Magnesium (as gluconate) 1 mg. I took 1 capsule everyday for 13 days and stopped it because I thought it might be harmful to the fetus. Do I have to complete the course or should I stop it? Do I have to start it once again after the first trimester? Regarding the acne treatment, it contains salcylic acid, menthol, alcohol, ABG, and others. It is used as a face wash to kill the bacteria causing oils thus prevent the appearance of acne. Will this affect my fetus? Can I continue its use? I feel that I had weight loss, is this a bad indication for the fetus? I had IgM titre for toxoplasmosis slight positive and I am under treatment with spiramycin. I will do serological test. Will the toxoplasmosis affect my fetus? I work with chemicals like amines, hydrazines, alcohols, chloroform and acetic acid. Will these affect my fetus? I used them even before I knew that I was pregnant. Please advise.

A:During pregnancy in general and complicated pregnancy in particular, all medicines, supplements etc. should be avoided except those that are required for pregnancy such as iron and folic acid. A normal diet gives adequate amounts of vitamins and minerals. There is no need to take supplements. The more the ingredients, more interactions and more side effects. You need only iron + folic acid such as Fecontin-F Continus (a slow release product). Since you are distressed with acne, there is no harm in using a topical, non-abrobable product for application on skin. Your statement 'I feel that I had weight loss ' is not adequate. Please weigh yourself on the scale every 15 days and keep a written record. If there is any loss of weight you must report to your gynaecologist. Sometimes in the first few months due to vomiting there may be slight loss of weight. Spiramycin is fine. There is no need to worry about toxoplasmosis. Routine ultrasound should be done periodically to check the growth and development of baby. Stop worrying. It is bad for your baby. General statement on selection of brands: There are scores, sometimes hundreds, of brands of the same medicine. Against about 300 pharmaceutical manufacturers in western countries like Britain, there are over 20,000 producers in India that market more than 40,000 brands. Most manufacturers do not have quality testing laboratories. Hence selection of brands is important. Many companies give incentives to prescribers to patronise their products. Patients should check the reputation of manufacturers before consuming medicines.

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