Warning issued on pregnancy drug
Women aged between 30 and 60 years old are being urged to ask their mothers if they were prescribed the drug Stilboestrol during pregnancy.
The synthetic oestrogen is known to contribute to an increased risk of a rare cervical cancer and higher infertility rates.
Stilboestrol was prescribed to pregnant women who had a history or were at risk of miscarriage between 1940 and 1971.
Doctors stopped prescribing Stilboestrol in 1971 but the side effects carry over into the next generation.
Women born during the period when the drug was prescribed are being encouraged to ask their mothers if they took the drug during pregnancy.
Therapeutic Goods Administration medical advisor John McEwan has urged women to find out if their mothers used the drug and to consult their doctor.
"They may miscarry, they may have difficulty conceiving," he said.
"I guess that the reason that the Adverse Drug Reactions [Advisory] Committee published this item in its bulletin was to remind practising doctors about this, that many of the doctors who are practising today probably hadn't even gone to medical school in 1971."
"We don't think that there will be any further serious consequences but because this is such an unusual thing it's actually important that women maintain an assurance that they're healthy," Mr McEwan added.
The note reminds doctors that daughters of women who took the drug need to have regular pap smear tests and mammograms.