Parkinsons Disease Home > Zelapar and Pregnancy

Animal studies involving Zelapar (orally disintegrating selegiline) and pregnancy have shown that this medication may not be safe during pregnancy, although the full risks to humans are not known. When given to pregnant animals, Zelapar decreased the number of live births and increased the risk of miscarriages. However, Zelapar may still be taken during pregnancy if the benefits outweigh the risks.

Zelapar and Pregnancy: An Overview

Zelapar® (orally disintegrating selegiline) is a prescription medication approved for the treatment of Parkinson's disease. Based on problems seen in animal studies, Zelapar may not be safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks to humans are not currently known.

Zelapar and Pregnancy Category C

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) uses a category system to classify the possible risks to a fetus when a specific medicine is taken during pregnancy. Pregnancy Category C is given to medicines that appear to cause harm to the fetus in animal studies but have not been studied in pregnant humans. Also, medicines that have not been studied in any pregnant women or animals are automatically given a pregnancy Category C rating.
When given to pregnant animals, Zelapar decreased offspring survival rates and offspring body weight. It also increased the risk of miscarriages and stillbirths. Zelapar has not been studied in pregnant women.
It is important to keep in mind that animals do not always respond to medicines in the same way that humans do. Therefore, a pregnancy Category C medicine may be given to a pregnant woman if her healthcare provider believes that the benefits to the woman outweigh any possible risks to the unborn child. There are a few reports of women who took selegiline (the active ingredient in Zelapar) during pregnancy without any problems, but there is not enough information to know if Zelapar is safe for human use during pregnancy.
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Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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