Drug Effects on Unborn Discussed at Meet Hee
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Drug Effects on Unborn Discussed at Meet Here By MARGARET MARTIN Times Medical Writer Researchists who-study birth defects have "not even touched the effects mind —. expanding drugs might have on women of child bearing age," and their, children, Dr. Dean J. Danner, assistant professor of chemistry at Northwestern State Universi-ty said here last night. Danner spoke to. the North-west Louisiana Section, Ameri-can Chemical Society. Drugs are a chemical which can act on the unborn, Danner pointed out, using thaljdomide as an example of what drugs can do to the uniborn. Thalidomide was a tranquili-zer which "had a great calming; effect on the patients," Danner said, "until Anstralian physi-cians pointed out that the high incidence of malformed children of women who had taken the drag." The babies, he said, had no arms or legs or their arms and legs were malformed. Decreased vitamin or oxygen and some food additives could result in a deformed child, he said. Viral infections can-also cause birth defects, he said. Seme virus will cross the placenta and affect the baby, some won't, and "we can't explain why this occurs," he said. If the mother is exposed to German measles in the first trimester, there is a high percentage baby will have a birth defect, such as a hearing loss, eyesight problems, or mental retardation, Danner said. Hereditary birth defects in-clude spinalfifida and the cleft palet. The child born with a heredi-tary birth defect, he said, usually has multiple problems. The hereditary birth defect is not always evident at birth, Danner p o i n .t e d out, giving Huntington's Chorea as an ex-ample. The disease does not show up until age 35-40 and then only in the male. A genteic abnormality comes about because of inborn errors of metabolism, he said. Early detection and treatment are important in working with birth defects. Danner said, adding that "often a counle have borne a defective child before they come for genetic counseling." With genetic counseling, a couple can find out the possibili-ty of having a child with a birth defect. Even after a woman is pregnant several tests can de-termine whether the child will be born defective. Genetic counseling is avail-able at the Birth Defects Center of the Louisiana State Universi-ty Medical School at Shreveport which is under the direction of Dr. Richard Juberg.
|Title||Drug Effects on Unborn Discussed at Meet Hee|
Danner, Dean, Jr.
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|Source||Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center Shreveport Medical Library (http://lib.sh.lsuhsc.edu)|
|Coverage-Spatial||Shreveport (Caddo, La.)|
|Rights||Physical rights are retained by Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center Shreveport. Copyright is retained in accordance with U.S. copyright laws.|