There is no evidence of safe and effective use of topical corticosteroids in pregnant mothers. Therefore, they should be used only if clearly needed. Long term use and large applications of topical corticosteroids may cause birth defects in the unborn. It is not known whether topical corticosteroids enter breast milk. Therefore, caution must be exercised before using it in nursing mothers. Topical corticosteroids should not be applied to the breasts of nursing mothers unless the mothers instructed to do so by the physician.
Given the published evidence, ICSs should be continued throughout pregnancy at low to moderate doses sufficient to control asthma symptoms and prevent exacerbations. However, caution must be taken with doses greater than 1000 µg/d (chlorofluorocarbon beclomethasone equivalent), although whether such doses cause adverse effects is currently still questionable. Patient education on proper ICS administration and adherence, including during the first trimester, must be ongoing. Well controlled asthma will reduce the need for higher ICS doses and possible exposure to systemic corticosteroids, and might decrease the risk of adverse pregnancy or perinatal outcomes.