Pregnant Women, Fetuses, and SBS Studies

Pregnant women and fetuses are provided additional protections in Subpart B of the federal regulations.  Generally this designation applies to medical studies where the procedure has the potential to cause harm to the unborn child.  As the fetus is unable to consent to risky procedures that may have a significant impact on their development, there are additional protections and requirements for conducting studies involving pregnant women.  However, such instances are rare for the social and behavioral sciences and pregnant participants can be treated as any other participant. If your study involves an activity that may be dangerous for a pregnant woman to perform, you may need to consider alternative methods for studying this group or not include pregnant women in your study.