Malformations Following Methimazole Exposure In Utero: An Open Issue

Silvio Ferraris, Mariella Valenzise, Margherita Lerone, Maria Teresa Divizia, Lucia Rosaia, Dario Blaid, Odette Nemelka, Giovanni Battista Ferrero, Margherita Silengol

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


BACKGROUND: In hyperthyroidism-complicated pregnancies, medical therapy is necessary to reach an euthyroid condition, and propylthiouracil (PTU) or methimazole (MMI) are used. These drugs are equally effective, but may cause fetal and neonatal hypothyroidism because they freely cross the placenta. Although PTU has not been significantly associated with embryo-fetal anomalies, it has been suggested that MMI might be responsible for a specific embryopathy. CASE(S): Two cases of major congenital anomalies after MMI exposure during pregnancy are reported. CONCLUSIONS: PTU should be the drug of choice, and the use of MMI should be restricted to cases with allergic reactions, intolerance, or poor response to PTU.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)989-992
Number of pages4
JournalBirth Defects Research Part A - Clinical and Molecular Teratology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2003


  • Aplasia cutis
  • Methimazole embryopathy
  • Thyroid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental Biology


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