Health and Medicine

Drugs and Medicines

What were the birth defects caused by the drug Thalidomide?

In the early 1960s, Thalidomide was marketed as a sedative and anti-nausea drug. It was found to cause birth defects in babies whose mothers had taken the drug for morning sickness. Some babies were born without arms or legs. Others were born blind or deaf or with heart defects or intestinal abnormalities. Although some were mentally retarded, most were of normal intelligence. This tragedy led to much stricter laws regulating the sale and testing of new drugs.


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