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thalidomide

Thalidomide was an over-the-counter drug used by pregnant women experiencing morning sickness in late 1950s Germany. Unfortunately, thalidomide caused severe birth defects in the children of the women who took the drug while pregnant, and many of these children did not survive. This catastrophe highlighted the need for more stringent drug-testing regulations. Now, the drug is only available by prescription for the treatment of cancer, leprosy, etc.