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Is It Safe to Take Antidiarrheal Medicine?

Is it okay to take antidiarrheal drugs while pregnant?
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profile picture of Kelly Kasper, MD
Updated
March 2, 2017
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Some of them, yes. So you’re not destined to rushing for the nearest bathroom for the next nine months. The most recommended antidiarrheal for pregnant women is a kaolin-and-pectin-type medication (Kaopectate). Avoid antidiarrheals that contain bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol) or atropine/diphenoxylate (Lomotil).

Most likely it’s just a bug, but it could be something more serious. If you’re having a lot of  diarrhea or if it’s severe or bloody, you should have this checked out by your OB.

The other problem with diarrhea during pregnancy is that you can easily lose more fluid than you’re taking in. So if you have diarrhea, step up your fluid intake to compensate for the fluid you’re, uh, flushing down the toilet. Water and electrolyte-based rehydrating drinks are good; stay away from fruit juices (these can make diarrhea worse!). Tea and soft drinks are also a bad idea if they have caffeine, since it can cause dehydration.

Please note: The Bump and the materials and information it contains are not intended to, and do not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis and should not be used as such. You should always consult with a qualified physician or health professional about your specific circumstances.

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