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Avatar universal

anti-nausea drug banned in 80's

I'm looking for the name of the drug that was prescribed for anti-nausea in pregnancy in the 70's and 80's that was subsequently banned because of problems it would cause female children.  Also any information about the effects to the child (22)attempting pregnancy.
109 Responses
Avatar universal
My mother took that same med while pg with me and while we do not know if it had anything to do with my issues, I have had 4 m/c and 2 successful pregnancies. I will do some looking and see what I can find. I will post the results on this thread.

Avatar universal
The med was called Bendectin. Here is a little blip I found on www.babycenter.com:

You may have also heard of Bendectin (which combines an antihistamine with vitamin B6). This drug was once widely used in the United States to treat morning sickness, but controversy over its safety during pregnancy
Avatar universal
Thanks so much for your help.  I didn't even know the drug name and your information sets my mind at ease.
Avatar universal
I was one of the thousands of women who took Benedictin in 1977 and 1980 for nausea and vomiting during both of my pregnancies. My oldest daughter has poly-cystic ovary disease and  has suffered with endometriosis  for approximately 15 years, She had been unsuccessful  during all of these years to get pregnant but just this week we have gottnen the news that her first invitro treatment was successful and she is due to give birth in late August 2008 or early September.  I can't help but wonder if this drug may have had something do with all of her female problems.
93532 tn?1349370450
I am not sure as the same ingredients in Bendectin are in Unisom and a prenatal. both of which can and are often allowed in pregnancy. There many things that can cause PCOS, including something as easily remedied as being overweight. Endometriosis remains a mystery to many as far as the root cause is concerned. I suppose one may never really know if the two are related. At any rate, congratulations on the upcoming grandchild!

Avatar universal
I myself am in the same boat as many people  asking the golden question, did bendectin cause my fertility issues? My OB and fertility specialist says that I have no problem concieving but my issue is with carrying a healthy pregnancy past 6 weeks. I have had 9 pregnancies in total 1 resulting in an ectopic pg and 1 resulting in my beautiful daughter who as time goes by I realize more and more how much or a blessing she really is. But this still doesn't take away the pain and morning for the others lost. if there is anyone out there who can shed some more light and provide other information it would be greatly appreciated.
93532 tn?1349370450
Bendectin wasn't linked as far as I know, I have been asked by every OB is my mother took DES (Diethylstilbestrol) while pregnant as that has been clearly linked to spontaneous abortion (miscarriage), ectopic pregnancy, and pre-term delivery.


As far as Bendectin, it has still been widely used around the world. I did come across one study that mentioned an increased risk of pyloric stenosis, but yet another that suggests the use of Bendectin is linked with a DECREASE in congenital heart defects. As you can see, the research is still be performed and can show many different end results.

But I have not found any conclusive evidence to link it with infertility.

I, too, have suffered through multiple losses, 5 total. But I cannot imagine how hard it must have been on you to lose so many.  I was blessed with three boys, my first came after my 3rd loss and then one loss between my first and second son and then another between my second and third . I underwent several tests after my 4th loss, all of which led to no conclusive answers. They were made aware of the prenatal exposure to Bendectin, which was considered insignificant. In the end, my testing pointed to "bad luck."

I suggest you google "Bendectin and Infertility" or "Prenatal exposure and infertility" The results brought back so much information, way too push to post here.

I hope some day you find your answers.
Avatar universal
Hi Susie:
I am also doing research on morning sickness drugs that my mom may have taken in 1980 to see if any of them are related to my fertility problems.  I am 28, and have also been diagnosed with PCOS.  We have been trying to get pregnant for 3 years.  I have had two miscarriages and no successful pregnancies.  If you find out any more link between Benedectin and PCOS/infertility please post your info!  I would be very interested to know.  And congrats on the grandbaby, I'm thinking positive thoughts for you.
Avatar universal
Hi, just wanted to let you all know, I came across this page while researching general materials involving Bendectin to supplement a legal paper I am writing. I am very familiar with the case itself and am writing about the particular scientific grounds that were at issue in that case, as it is a landmark for use of expert testimony. The case itself makes it very clear: the drug manufacturer had a vast epidemiological study using about 130,000 people, and found no link to the defects, BUT the people who were suing alleging defects caused by the drug had several other experts, all very well renowned, who reanalyzed the SAME information and found a link, as well as doing many other kinds of tests (animal, test tube, etc) and were all of the opinion that the drug DOES cause birth defects. Please just be aware that informal research on any drug you think you might take is not enough, you will come up with lots of contradictory information on old drugs, and very positive information on new drugs: the FDA and others have literally dropped the ball on this, if you can possibly avoid taking drugs at all during pregnancy that is your best bet by far. Keep in mind that the drugs being put out over the last 10 years or so are only tested by the companies that make them, and all negative research is NOT PUBLISHED, so even doctors will not have access to it. Hope that is helpful, and good luck.
Avatar universal
I am 31 yrs old, and male. Both my mother and her sister were taking "BENEDECTIN" in 1977.  I and my cousin was diagnosed with enlarged aortic valves with abnormalities, sadly he did not survive a 2nd birthday. As I survived a grocery list of defects began showing. My feet are flat, all 10 toes have fused knuckles (they dont bend), my fingers are increasingly curling down and toward the thumb. I've struggled with fainting, cesures, migrians, and bowel disorders since birth. In my mid-20's diagnosed with mitral and tricuspid valve stenosis. At 28 I recieved a prostectic mitral valve and told to expect surgical attention of the tricuspid within 5-10 yrs.

65 % of females and 40 % of males born 1976-1982 with in utero exposure to "BENEDECTIN" have some type of physical abnormality. This seems to be more than just "bad luck" to me. This drug was shelved when cost exceded profit for that reason alone. 25 yrs later "BENEDECTIN" (minus the vitamin B-6) is "safe again", being sold again, and guess why ..... it's profitible again. I wonder what this comment board will look like in 2010, does history really repeat itself?
Avatar universal
My mother took Bendectin when she was pregnant with me in 1976.  I have two older sisters and one younger sister.  Mine was the only of my mother's pregnancies in which Bendectin was taken.  None of my sisters has had any difficulting in becoming pregnant nor carrying their babies to full term.  I, on the other hand, have had countlesss problems with infertility and miscarriages.  Coincidence?  Maybe, but I have been extensively tested for the cause of my infertility and no apparent cause has been found.  I am not overweight, nor do I have any physical abnormalities.  Should I just chalk my situation up to bad luck or coincidence?  Possibly.
If you are looking for the FDA to come out and say, "Ooops, sorry.  Yeah, it really does cause birth defects." It's just not gonna happen.  If you're one of the moms who took Bendectin back in the 70's and you're blaming yourself for your daughter's infertility, DON'T.  You did nothing to purposefully hurt your child.   However, if you are a mother who is considering taking any medication during pregnancy, please do your own research.  The FDA and health care professionals are not going to tell you if any drug is 100% safe because they simply do not know.  There is no way for the FDA to say that a  drug is not harmful until the public tries it for a few years.  That's when they come out and say, "Oops we didn't know it could do that.  Stop taking it."  Don't be an "oops".  Be dilligent in your research and don't get all of your information from any one individual or source.  Hope this is helpful.  Best of luck to you!  
Avatar universal
I am a 28 yr old female, My mother took Bendectin in Australia in 1981. I have had seven operations for polycystic ovaries and countless others that went untreated. I have also for the last 10 years had increasing arthritis in my knees, hands, feet and back which started at a young age. As I have gotten older I have started to notice that my right side of my body is slightly larger than my left ( more than the doctors generally say is nomal). The latter of these issues is how I came accross this blog. I had always wondered if that drug had anything to do with the size discrepencies, but had no idea that there was a link to polycystic ovaries.

If anybody knows of any journal articles that have been published regarding this drug that would be very helpful

Avatar universal
I took Bendectin for my 1975, 1978 and 1981 Pregnanies and not one of my three chidren have any unusal problems.  They all need glasses but my husband and myself are both very near and far sighted.  Diabetes is my family but none of my young adults have that problems.  Is possible I was lucky or could it be that I'm multi-racial and that was genetic aid.
Avatar universal
My mother was one of the mothers involved in the lawsuit in reference to bendectin in the 80s.  I have a list of abnormalities including  a malformed hand, my right side larger than left, calcium deficiency, arthritis in many joints, and probably more that I am not aware of.  My mother says there was a settlement for this lawsuit but it was withdrawn because some of the mothers felt like the settlement was not enough money.  Now that I am older and am having more problems, because of natural body deterioration along with these abnormalities, I wish there was some money out there for me. The doctors told my parents that my problems would get worse as I got older and boy were they right.  You know what would make me happy?  To know why and how.  I am an analyst by nature and I would like to know exactly what happened, bendectin or not I would like to know.  
Avatar universal
I began taking this drug in 1982 with my first pregnancy, I was so sick and when I began taking it I felt so much better but now after fearing this drug may have caused all the problems my daughter has faced the last 10 years I wish I had suffered through the sickness!  She has so many female problems, back and hip problems, surgeries and was hoping to learn more about anyone else having these issues?  Does anyone know if there is site where there are more blogs or other sites with more information on this drug? Thanks so much!

Avatar universal
My Mom took Bendectin when she was pregnant with me and I am struggling with similar things to others here -- 3 miscarriages (no live births), endometriosis, PCOS.  I did some searches after coming across these posts and found this website with a lot of information:


It blows all the other articles you read about how safe Bendectin was out of the water and makes an important distinction.  Prior to 1976 Bendectin had three ingredients -- B-6, doxylamine and dicyclomine.  The articles I've found about how safe the drug is only talk about the two ingredient version, which has B-6 and doxylamine.  

The article explains how dicylomine -- especially in combination with doxylamine -- is a cause of malformations and is likened to thalidomide.  I've only read the first article so far, but it doesn't seem to indicate anything about it causing fertility issues -- BUT it doesn't appear that the effects of this drug beyond what is noticed at birth has been studied.  If you take the time to read the article you will see how badly the whole thing was handled.  Reading other people's stories here really has to make those of us who were exposed to it wonder!!!
Avatar universal
Update: Part Two of the article talks more about the ingredient doxylamine for those of you who took or were exposed to the drug after 1976 -- although in the first article it explains that because there was never a recall of the three ingredient version there could have been women exposed to this one up until 1982, when the five year shelf life would have passed.
Avatar universal
30 year old male: My mother took this pill only a few times when she was pregnant with me. 1979-1980, She hated pills. I was born legally deaf, but have about 85% hearing in 1 ear. I also have deformities of my ears. She still had the bottle years later she saw a talk show addressing the issues people where having that had taken the pill.
Avatar universal
I am 29 and have recently found out I have what's called a 'bicornuate uterus'. This can cause miscarriages and early births. My mom took an anti - morning sickness drug when pregnant with me in 1980, and also with my brother and sister (1979 and 1976). She doesn't remember the name of it though. My brother and sister both have abnormalities in the reproductive organs, and so now I'm starting to wonder if the meds my mom took had an effect on us.
Anyone else whose mother took Bendectin have a bicornuate uterus??
Avatar universal
i found out that i had a bicornuate uterus when i was 7 weeks pregnant with my first daughter during an ultrasound.  my mother took benedectin when she was pregnant with me in 1976.  i have had two successful, though breech and painful pregnancies.  both kids born via c-section.  i have suffered from migraines from early childhood and an irregular menstrual cycle.  
Avatar universal
I am a 26 yo female and just recently found out my Mum took Bendectin in 1983 when she was pregnant with me. I have had problems ever since puberty with cystitis and irregular menstral cycles. Now I am trying to concieve and finding it near impossible. The more research I do into bendectin the more I think it's all related... I think we are only beginning to see the real effects of what this drug has done.
Avatar universal
I'm a 26 year old male with a long list of birth defects.  I am wondering if anyone has had any physical deformities of the brain?  I have been plagued with migraines and other issues since i was really young.  Has anyone else discovered cerebral infarx?
Avatar universal
My mother also took this nausea pill in 1975 while pregnant with me. I was born with severe abnomalities. My fingers and toes did not fully develope in both hands and my right foot. I also have scoliosis. My mother had a cyst the size of a grapefruit on her ovary when I was young, and I can't help but wonder if this drug was the cause. I see that there was a lawsuit filed, many years ago. I think that it is time for those of us that this drug has affected to take a stand and file another lawsuit.
1432391 tn?1283354728
my mother took the same med while pregnant with me in 1979. I have been unsuccessful in getting pregnant. I want to know if anyone has filed a lawsuit and won. Please get back with me!
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