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In Utero Exposure to Antiseizure Meds Does Not Affect Child Creativity

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In secondary analysis, fetal ASM exposure-dependent effects were seen for executive function at age 4.5 years

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, May 29, 2024 (HealthDay News) — There are no differences in creative thinking at age 4.5 years for children of women with epilepsy (WWE) and children of healthy women (HW), but fetal antiseizure medication (ASM) exposure-dependent effects are seen for executive function in children of WWE, according to a study published online May 29 in Neurology.

Kimford J. Meador, M.D., from Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, and colleagues examined fetal exposure of newer ASMs on creativity and executive functions in 4.5-year-old children of WWE compared with children of HW. The primary analysis included 251 and 73 children of WWE and HW, respectively.

The researchers observed no differences between children of WWE and HW in creativity or executive function. For creativity measures, no ASM exposure-dependent effects were seen, but there were exposure-dependent effects noted for executive function for ratio ASM concentration and ratio defined daily dose.

“Our findings highlight that even for epilepsy medications that are generally considered to be safe in pregnancy, dose adjustments should be made with a goal of reaching an optimal balance between controlling seizures and the minimizing negative effects on the developing child,” Meador said in a statement.

Several authors disclosed ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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