Taking paracetamol or other painkillers during pregnancy does not increase the risk of asthma in children, according to a study of almost five lakh women. The research, which used prescription data on painkillers, supports earlier findings that women taking paracetamol during pregnancy are more likely to have children who develop asthma.
However, it also suggests that painkillers are not the cause of this increase. Rather, some unidentified factor is linked to use of these drugs and to asthma risk. The research, published in the European Respiratory Journal, should give women reassurance to take painkillers during pregnancy when they are prescribed by a doctor.