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'The other Thalidomide?': Pregnancy drugs linked to birth defects 

Marie Lyon, whose daughter Sarah was born with a deformed arm, took Primodos when she was pregnant with her first child
Marie Lyon, whose daughter Sarah was born with a deformed arm, took Primodos when she was pregnant with her first child  Credit: Paul Cooper

When Marie Lyon suspected she was pregnant with her first child 47 years ago, she didn’t think to question the GP who told her to take two tablets, explaining they would tell her if she was indeed carrying a baby. She was given two small round pills in a green packet, and advised to take one. If she didn’t have a period, she was to take a second 12 hours later. “The guilt I felt later because I didn’t question it was unbearable,” says Marie.

When her daughter Sarah was born, it was clear from the way the nurses rushed her away immediately that something was wrong. “When they brought her back, she was swaddled up to her neck in a blanket. They just said: ‘Look, we’re really sorry but we have to tell you that your daughter’s arm didn’t form from below the elbow.’

“When they did unwrap her, she was beautiful, but just where the elbow had been there was this perfect, tiny little palm with four...

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