European Archives of Oto-Rhino-Laryngology

, Volume 275, Issue 2, pp 325–333 | Cite as

Safety of intranasal corticosteroid sprays during pregnancy: an updated review

  • Ahmed H. Alhussien
  • Riyadh A. Alhedaithy
  • Saad A. Alsaleh
Review Article



Rhinitis and rhinosinusitis are commonly encountered in pregnant women. Intranasal corticosteroid (INCS) sprays are generally safe and effective in the treatment of these conditions in the general population. However, the use of some of these INCS sprays during pregnancy is still controversial.


To review the current literature about the safety of intranasal corticosteroid sprays during pregnancy.


Using different search engines, each type of INCS was reviewed separately (triamcinolone, beclomethasone, budesonide, fluticasone propionate, fluticasone furoate, mometasone, and ciclesonide). A total of 51 full-length articles were examined for eligibility. After applying inclusion and exclusion criteria, a total of three articles were reviewed.


No significant association with congenital organ malformations has been linked to intranasal use of beclomethasone, budesonide, fluticasone propionate, fluticasone furoate, or mometasone. Intranasal triamcinolone, however, has been found to have a significant association with respiratory tract defects. Data about the safety of intranasal ciclesonide during pregnancy are not available.


Lacking sufficient clinical trials on the use of intranasal corticosteroid sprays in pregnancy, we suggest that the intranasal use of fluticasone furoate, mometasone, and budesonide is safe if they are used at the recommended therapeutic dose after a proper medical evaluation. Intranasal fluticasone propionate might be a safe option in the absence of other INCS options due to its questionable efficacy during pregnancy. Risk-benefit ratio should always be considered before prescribing any intranasal corticosteroid sprays during pregnancy.


Intranasal Corticosteroids Safety Pregnancy Rhinitis Sinusitis 


Compliance with ethical standards


No funding was received for this study.

Conflict of interest

Authors have no conflict of interests.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ahmed H. Alhussien
    • 1
  • Riyadh A. Alhedaithy
    • 2
  • Saad A. Alsaleh
    • 3
  1. 1.College of MedicineKing Saud UniversityRiyadhSaudi Arabia
  2. 2.Division of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Department of SurgeryKing Abdulaziz Medical City, National Guard Health AffairsRiyadhSaudi Arabia
  3. 3.Rhinology and Endoscopic Skull Base Surgery Unit, Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery DepartmentKing Saud University Medical CityRiyadhSaudi Arabia

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