Dexone - Off-label Use - Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia

Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia

Dexamethasone has been used as an off-label prenatal treatment for the symptoms of congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) in female fetuses. CAH causes a variety of physical abnormalities, notably ambiguous genitalia in girls. Early prenatal CAH treatment has been shown to reduce some CAH symptoms, but it does not treat the underlying congenital disorder.

A small clinical trial found long-term effects on verbal working memory among the small group of children treated prenatally, but the small number of test subjects means the study cannot be considered definitive. Administration of prenatal dexamethasone has been the subject of controversy over issues of informed consent and because treatment must predate a clinical diagnosis of CAH in the female fetus.

A study utilizing Freedom of Information Act findings to "detail an extremely troubling off-label medical intervention employed in the U.S. on pregnant women to intentionally engineer the development of their fetuses for sex normalization purposes." Glucocorticoids may alter “fetal programming,” potentially resulting in serious metabolic problems that will not become apparent until adulthood. Prenatal treatment of female fetuses could prevent those fetuses from becoming lesbians after birth, may make them more likely to engage in "traditionally" female-identified behaviour and careers, and more interested in bearing and raising children. The essay suggests prenatal "dex" treatments constitute the first known attempt to use an in utero method to attempt to reduce the incidence of homosexuality in humans. A medical consensus in 2010 by the Endocrine Society and affiliated organizations indicated prenatal dexamethasone for CAH should be regarded as experimental and should only be used in Institutional Review Board-approved controlled clinical trials at centers large enough to collect meaningful data.

Read more about this topic:  Dexone, Off-label Use

Other articles related to "congenital adrenal hyperplasia, congenital, adrenal, hyperplasia, adrenals":

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Famous quotes containing the word congenital:

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