The growth and development outcomes of foetuses born of albino rats (Rattus Norvegicus) prenatally exposed to varying doses of lamotrigine
Keywords:Lamotrigine, Anticonvulsants, Teratogenic, Gestation Period
The growth and development outcomes of the foetuses born by mothers who prenatally get exposed to lamotrigine (LAMT) have not been well established. Lamotrigine is an anticonvulsant medicine used in the management of acute epileptic seizures, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, fibromyalgia, schizophrenia, unipolar depression, bipolar I disorder maintenance among others. Though currently lamotrigine is being prescribed as a first line medicine in the management of these maternal conditions, past studies are not conclusive on its teratogenic effects on growth and development of embryos and foetuses upon its in-utero exposure, with some demonstrating no effects, while others recommend further studies. Data on growth and development effects upon administration of lamotrigine at varying dosages at different trimesters will therefore be of help to the expectant mothers who consume lamotrigine, developing embryos and foetuses as well as guide the clinicians on the dosage and when to prescribe lamotrigine. A post-test-only experimental design was adopted using 30 female sexually mature rats of 250 + 30grams.These female albino rats were divided into two main groups of 3 rats in the control group and 27 rats in the dosage group. Excel spreadsheets were used to code the data and was analyzed in SPSS. Study findings were expressed as mean + standard error of the mean (SEM). Values whose p<.05 were reported as being statistically significant different. Study findings depicted a reduction in mean fetal weight (FW), mean crown-rump length (CRL), mean bi-parietal diameter (BD), mean head circumference (HC) as well as mean head length (HL) in a time and dose related manner. More reduction in foetal growth and development parameters were observed in high lamotrigine dosages, especially when administrations were done during the first and the second trimesters. Further studies with animals close to human species are recommended to guide on the safety human therapeutic dosages.