The University of North Carolina recently completed a study of the use of Xolair (Omalizumab) in pregnancy.
Xolair is a monoclonal, anti-IgE antibody that is used as an add-on-therapy for moderate to severe asthmatics not adequately controlled with inhaled steroids.
Asthma is a common condition affecting roughly 10 percent of pregnant women. It is well known that poorly controlled asthma during pregnancy increases the risk for congenital anomalies, perinatal mortality, low birth weight and prematurity.
Xolair has been a welcome addition to the asthma treatment tool box, but up until now its safety in pregnancy was not known.
Although the study group was small — 191 women — the outcome indicated that Xolair does not appear to increase the risk for the fetus beyond that seen in the general asthmatic population.