In utero beta 2 adrenergic agonist exposure and adverse neurophysiologic and behavioral outcomes

Frank R. Witter, Andrew W. Zimmerman, James P. Reichmann, Susan L. Connors

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Beta 2 adrenergic receptor overstimulation during critical periods of prenatal development can induce a permanent shift in the balance of sympathetic-to-parasympathetic tone. This is a biologically plausible mechanism whereby beta 2 adrenergic agonists can induce functional and behavioral teratogenesis, which explains their association with increases in autism spectrum disorders, psychiatric disorders, poor cognitive, motor function and school performance, and changes in blood pressure in the offspring. The use of beta 2 adrenergic agonists should be limited to proven indications when alternate drugs are ineffective or unavailable; the risks of untreated disease to the mother and fetus are greater than the risk of the beta 2 adrenergic agonist.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)553-559
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of obstetrics and gynecology
Volume201
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2009

Keywords

  • asthma
  • autism spectrum disorder
  • beta 2 adrenergic agonist
  • preterm labor
  • ritodrine
  • terbutaline

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

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