It is unethical to test drugs on pregnant women. Several drugs can pass over the placental barrier and harm the fetus. However, as a consequence of very little research of drug effects on pregnant women, doctors face major issues prescribing medicines to unwell pregnant women. Since the woman must get well, the doctor prescribes a common drug – which may not have undergone clinical trials on pregnant women. And, doesn’t the real danger lie in treating a pregnant woman without evidence about the effects of the drug?
Now, a group of people are trying to change this by developing guidelines for ethical and scientific research so that drug data on mothers-to-be is available.