This Painkiller May Carry an Infertility Risk … For Your Unborn Son

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Image via Flickr/ The Javorac

Are you one who tries to combat pain during pregnancy with painkillers? Whether you do or you don't is OK, and there are plenty of people to back up your stance on pain meds during pregnancy, but for those who are OK with using medication to lower some of the pain, I need you to pay close attention to what I'm about to say.

Paracetamol, a pretty commonly used drug to dull pain, has been found by scientists and researchers at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland to be an obstacle in producing testosterone.

You may think to yourself, “Well, I am a woman, so why on earth would I need testosterone. Estrogen for life!” But, actually, both men and women produce estrogen and testosterone — depending on what sex you are will dictate which hormone is produced more abundantly. 

So, yes, women do need to produce testosterone in their own bodies, but for pregnant women who have male buns in the oven, this halt in testosterone production could contribute to the boy's sterility later on in life. 

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According to the study, when the mice were given three doses of paracetamol for at least one week, production of testosterone dropped by 45%. That's a pretty significant percentage. With such a reduction of testosterone, the male baby, along with the chance of being sterile later in life, could also have an elevated risk of things like testicular cancer and undescended testicles later on in life.

Based on an abundance of studies, paracetamol is considered to be the safest of all painkillers for pregnant women, but remember to use only as directed and speak with your doctor if you're considering regular use. Sure, family sizes are going down, and maybe your son would like to curtail his reproduction, but that's not something that can be said for sure. However, one thing that is sure is that you and he would want less of a chance of him being diagnosed with testicular cancer. 

{ MORE: Yup, I'm Paying a Housekeeper to Get Through My Summer Pregnancy }

Do you use paracetamol for pain relief during pregnancy? 

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This Painkiller May Carry an Infertility Risk … For Your Unborn Son

Jace Whatcott is a self-diagnosed introvert who loves crossword puzzles, golf, and reading. Despite being a male contributor—one of the few on this particular website—he is not in unfamiliar territory. Because he is an English major, 90% of his classmates are females, so he’s not too worried about being a fish out of water. One of his favorite things to do is to raid local thrift stores for used books. He’s always looking for something to read, or for something to put on his endless to-r ... More

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