Today my fiance and I found out that she is six weeks pregnant. However Three days ago, unknowing to her condition, we took LSD.We are both worried that this one time event, in an otherwise very healthy lifestyle, has jeopordized the health of the baby. We are concerned about possible birth defects, pregnancy problems, and any other abnormalities associated with LSD taken at this crucial time. Do you know any early tests, medical references or advice we could use?


Peg Plumbo CNM

Peg Plumbo has been a certified nurse-midwife (CNM) since 1976. She has assisted at over 1,000 births and currently teaches in the... Read more

I wish there was some way to reassure you that your baby will be just fine but there is so little data out there on this drug. Most users also smoke or use multiple other drugs so studies vary as to effects they report. Also there has been no studies of the passage of this drug across the placenta although it is generally thought to cross due to its relatively low molecular weight.

Chromosome breakage has been reported but a dose-response relationship was not always apparent. No studies reviewed in Briggs' "Drugs in pregnancy and lactation" could confirm chromosome damage however or any increase rate of miscarriage. Their summary states: "the available data indicate that PURE LSD (not street type) does not cause chromosomal abnormalities, spontaneous abortions or congenital malformations. There have been no cases published of fetal anomalies when only pure LSD was administered under medical supervision. Early descriptions of congenital abnormalities involved patients who had used or were using illicit LSD and are believed to be examples of reporting bias, the effects of multiple drugs or other nondrug factors. More research is needed."

The March of Dimes in your area would be a good resource for you. I've reprinted one abstract which I found in the recent literature.

Good luck.

Torfs CP. Velie EM. Oechsli FW. Bateson TF. Curry CJ.

A population-based study of gastroschisis: demographic, pregnancy, and lifestyle risk factors.

Teratology. 50(1):44-53, 1994 Jul.


Gastroschisis, an abdominal wall defect, most often occurs in infants of young mothers. To identify risk factors for gastroschisis, we conducted a case-control study in the population surveyed by the California Birth Defects Monitoring Program (CBDMP). From structured questionnaire data, we compared sociodemographic, reproductive, and lifestyle factors for 110 mothers of infants with gastroschisis with those for 220 age-matched mothers of normal infants. Univariate matched-pair analysis showed significant associations of gastroschisis with mother's education, yearly family income, marital status, a history of mother's mother smoking, mother's father's absence from home during the mother's youth, more than one elective abortion, a short interval between menarche and first pregnancy, siblings from different fathers, and use of either a recreational drug (either cocaine, amphetamine, marijuana, or LSD), alcohol, or tobacco during the trimester preceding pregnancy. For cocaine, amphetamine, and marijuana, use of more than one drug showed a stronger association than single drug use. The association was stronger if both parents used drugs. Although many variables were correlated, odds ratios (OR) were significant (95% confidence intervals) in multivariate conditional logistic analysis for: yearly family income < $10,000 \[OR = 4.34 (1.54, 12.22)\] or $10,000-$49,999 \[OR = 3.93 (1.43, 10.80)\]; mother's mother's smoking status not known \[OR = 3.99 (1.66, 9.56)\]; mother's father's absence from home during her youth \[OR = 3.11 (1.14, 8.46)\]; and drug use by mother \[OR = 2.21 (1.21, 4.03)\], father \[OR = 1.66 (1.02, 2.69)\], or both \[OR = 3.05 (1.48, 6.28)\]. The best predictive model explained 32% of the deviance. Young, socially disadvantaged women with a history of substance use were at highest risk for a child with a gastroschisis.

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