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Avage and Pregnancy

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration considers Avage (tazarotene) a pregnancy Category X medication. This classification is reserved for drugs that should be avoided during pregnancy, as they are known to pose clear risks to the fetus. Avage hasn't been studied systematically in women who are expecting. However, based on the results of animal studies, birth defects could occur, including spina bifida and hydrocephalus.

I'm Pregnant -- Can I Take Avage?

Avage® (tazarotene) is a prescription skin cream used to treat fine wrinkles and skin discoloration due to sun overexposure. This medication poses clear risks to a developing fetus, and pregnant women should not use it.

What Is Pregnancy Category X?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category X is given to medicines that show problems to the fetus in animal studies or in human use of the medication. With this category, the potential risks clearly outweigh the potential benefits.
Avage is a retinoid, and retinoid medications are known to cause birth defects and other problems. When Avage was given to pregnant animals, it caused a range of serious birth defects, such as spina bifida, hydrocephalus, and heart problems. Other problems, such as low fetal weight, miscarriages, and developmental delays, were also seen.
Although Avage has not been systematically studied in pregnant women, nine women became pregnant while using tazarotene (the active ingredient in Avage) during clinical studies. One woman chose to have an elective abortion for unrelated reasons, but the other eight women gave birth to normal children.

Avoiding Pregnancy While on Avage

Due to the potentially serious problems Avage may cause during pregnancy, it is critical that women avoid becoming pregnant while using it. Women of childbearing potential must have a negative pregnancy test within two weeks before starting Avage, and they should start taking it during a normal menstrual period. Adequate birth control must be used at all times.
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Avage Cream Information

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