Back to Browse Journals » Clinical Epidemiology » Volume 3 » Issue 1

Drug use during pregnancy in Sweden – assessed by the Prescribed Drug Register and the Medical Birth Register

Authors Olof Stephansson, Fredrik Granath, Tobias Svensson, et al

Published 1 February 2011 Volume 2011:3(1) Pages 43—50


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Olof Stephansson, Fredrik Granath, Tobias Svensson, Bengt Haglund, Anders Ekbom, Helle Kieler
Clinical Epidemiology Unit and Centre for Pharmacoepidemiology, Department of Medicine, Karolinska University Hospital and Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden

Purpose: The purpose of this research is to study drug use during pregnancy in Sweden and agreement between use according to antenatal medical records and dispensed drugs from a pharmacy database.
Patients and methods: From the Swedish Medical Birth Register (MBR), we established a population-based cohort of 102,995 women who gave birth in 2007. Using the unique personal registration number, information on dispensed drugs from the Prescribed Drug Register (PDR) was obtained prior to, during, and after the pregnancies and compared with MBR information on drug use from standardized antenatal medical records.
Results: According to the PDR, 57.6% of the 102,995 women filled a prescription with at least one drug during pregnancy and 50.9% during the lactating period (until 3 months after delivery). The most dispensed drugs during pregnancy were B-lactam antibacterials and penicillins. Agreement between drugs recorded in antenatal medical records and dispensed drugs was highest for drugs used for chronic conditions. The agreement was particularly high for thyroid therapy (85.3%), anti-intestinal inflammatory drugs (80.3%), antiepileptics (69.2%), immunosuppressants (67.4%), and insulin (63.8%). Agreement for drugs used for occasional use was generally lower, ranging between 42.5% for antihistamines and 0.8% for gynecological anti-infectives.
Conclusions: A large proportion of women filled a prescription during pregnancy or the lactating period. Agreement between drug use in medical antenatal records and register information from a national pharmacy database was high for drugs used for chronic conditions but low for occasional use. For occasionally used drugs, medical record and register-based data may provide incomplete exposure information because of nonreporting or noncompliance.

Keywords: drug utilization, pregnancy, lactation, pharmacoepidemiology

Creative Commons License This work is published and licensed by Dove Medical Press Limited. The full terms of this license are available at and incorporate the Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial (unported, v3.0) License. By accessing the work you hereby accept the Terms. Non-commercial uses of the work are permitted without any further permission from Dove Medical Press Limited, provided the work is properly attributed. For permission for commercial use of this work, please see paragraphs 4.2 and 5 of our Terms.

Download Article [PDF]  View Full Text [HTML][Machine readable]


Readers of this article also read:

Emerging and future therapies for hemophilia

Carr ME, Tortella BJ

Journal of Blood Medicine 2015, 6:245-255

Published Date: 3 September 2015

Green synthesis of water-soluble nontoxic polymeric nanocomposites containing silver nanoparticles

Prozorova GF, Pozdnyakov AS, Kuznetsova NP, Korzhova SA, Emel’yanov AI, Ermakova TG, Fadeeva TV, Sosedova LM

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2014, 9:1883-1889

Published Date: 16 April 2014

Rituximab for managing acquired hemophilia A in a case of chronic neutrophilic leukemia with the JAK2 kinase V617F mutation

Imashuku S, Kudo N, Kubo K, Saigo K, Okuno N, Tohyama K

Journal of Blood Medicine 2012, 3:157-161

Published Date: 5 December 2012

Methacrylic-based nanogels for the pH-sensitive delivery of 5-Fluorouracil in the colon

Ashwanikumar N, Kumar NA, Nair SA, Kumar GS

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2012, 7:5769-5779

Published Date: 15 November 2012

A novel preparation method for silicone oil nanoemulsions and its application for coating hair with silicone

Hu Z, Liao M, Chen Y, Cai Y, Meng L, Liu Y, Lv N, Liu Z, Yuan W

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2012, 7:5719-5724

Published Date: 12 November 2012

Cross-linked acrylic hydrogel for the controlled delivery of hydrophobic drugs in cancer therapy

Deepa G, Thulasidasan AK, Anto RJ, Pillai JJ, Kumar GS

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2012, 7:4077-4088

Published Date: 27 July 2012

Particle size reduction to the nanometer range: a promising approach to improve buccal absorption of poorly water-soluble drugs

Rao S, Song Y, Peddie F, Evans AM

International Journal of Nanomedicine 2011, 6:1245-1251

Published Date: 20 June 2011

Crystallization after intravitreal ganciclovir injection

Pitipol Choopong, Nattaporn Tesavibul, Nattawut Rodanant

Clinical Ophthalmology 2010, 4:709-711

Published Date: 14 July 2010