What are the risks of my wife taking clonazepam during pregnancy? To be specific, I am looking for recent studies on this, I have done a lot of research and am fairly confused by what I have read.

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    To make this question a better fit for this site: exclude the personal details, share a few of your most important research attempts and also what it was that confused you. Commented Sep 20, 2017 at 15:23

1 Answer 1


This is an issue for which YOU NEED to have a risks-benefits discussion with a doctor. Only they can help guide you whether to continue the medication or not, as there may be risks either way.

I am answering this question because it is helpful to be aware that until recently, the FDA classified medications into Pregnancy Risk Categories based upon evidence from studies or lack thereof. They removed these labels (for reasons outside the scope of this question) but the categories are helpful at least to start with.

Benzodiazepines as a class were Category D in pregnancy including clonazepam. Some Benzodiazepines were Category X.

Category D There is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on adverse reaction data from investigational or marketing experience or studies in humans, but potential benefits may warrant use of the drug in pregnant women despite potential risks. Example drugs: lisinopril, alprazolam, losartan, clonazepam, lorazepam

Category X Studies in animals or humans have demonstrated fetal abnormalities and/or there is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on adverse reaction data from investigational or marketing experience, and the risks involved in use of the drug in pregnant women clearly outweigh potential benefits. Example drugs: atorvastatin, simvastatin, warfarin, methotrexate, finasteride

This does NOT mean 100% for sure that a medication should not be taken - it is ALWAYS IMPORTANT to have a risks-benefits discussion with a doctor for medications during pregnancy!

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    We have had a conversation with her psychiatrist, as well as her OB. Her OB appears to think nothing is wrong, and her psychiatrist seemed to only be concerned with the clonazepam, but in a very wishywashy way. Giving vague statements about what could go wrong, and also saying that staying on the medication could be better because she would be less anxious (she is on this medication as an anti anxiety, and has pretty powerful anxiety attacks) he ended with telling us that we need to do some research. I am here because I am unable to interpret these studies, not being a doctor.
    – Patrick
    Commented Sep 20, 2017 at 9:54
  • I'm sorry they couldn't help. And I understand your position. But it's a personal advice request, and we may not be able to answer that further here for a number of reasons. health.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/747/… If you feel the doc's answer was insufficient, you should continue it with them or see someone else.
    – DoctorWhom
    Commented Sep 20, 2017 at 13:58
  • I am not asking for personal advice, I am asking for recent studies on this subject, and preferably a laymans explanation of said studies.
    – Patrick
    Commented Sep 20, 2017 at 14:07
  • @Patrick - If you give us a study, we can read it and interpret it for you. Ask a separate question for each paper, and cite a whole paper, not just an abstract. If you can't get the whole paper, the abstract will have to do. Commented Sep 20, 2017 at 14:43
  • @doctorwhom, I apologise, I have been rude. After reading the question in your comment I now understand what the problem with this question is. It is intensely frustrating to be in a situation like this. I will do more research and ask what are hopefully better questions.
    – Patrick
    Commented Sep 20, 2017 at 17:07

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