Help From Denver SSRI and SNRI Birth Injury Defect Attorneys
While pregnant mothers dealing with depression often look to find relief in antidepressant medications, they sometimes unknowingly cause birth defects in their unborn children. This happens when they take Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRI) or Selective Serotonin-Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors (SNRI). These include:
- Prozac (Fluoxetine, Eli Lilly)
- Zoloft (Sertraline, Pfizer)
- Paxil (Paroxetine, GlaxoSmithKline)
- Celexa (Citalopram, Forest Laboratories)
- Lexapro (Escitalopram, Forest Laboratories)
- Effexor (Venlafaxine, Pfizer)
- Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine, Pfizer)
Drug manufacturers pushed these drugs onto the market without providing pregnant mothers the most important fact:
In an attempt to relieve their depression, pregnant women might cause permanent damage to their children.
The medical and scientific community found evidence of a connection between SSRI and SNRI antidepressants and serious birth defects. These include:
- Atrial/septal defects (abnormal formation of tissue that separates one chamber of the heart from the other).
- Other cardiac (heart) defects and congenital malformations.
- Persistent pulmonary hypertension (PPH), in which high pressure in the blood vessels of the lung makes it hard for newborn babies to breathe and an estimated 10% to 20% of infants do not survive.
- Autism spectrum disorder, neurological disorders resulting in complex developmental disabilities related to social interaction and communication skills.
- Neural-tube defects (brain and spinal cord).
- Craniosynostosis (skull defects).
- Infant omphalocele (abdominal wall defects).
- Clubfoot (one or both feet turn downward and inward).
- Anal atresia (complete or partial closure of the anus).
- Cleft lip and cleft palate.
- Limb defects (arms and legs).
- Premature births.
Background on Dangers of Antidepressants During Pregnancy
Starting in the mid-2000s, people started fearing that taking SSRI antidepressants during the first trimester could cause birth defects. As researchers conducted studies, new evidence surfaced. These concerns were repeatedly confirmed, so the FDA responded by issuing public warnings and mandating stronger warning labels.
Recent studies are showing that SSRI antidepressants can be dangerous if taken at any time during the pregnancy, not just the first trimester.
In the wake of increased birth defects, numerous lawsuits have followed. GlaxoSmithKline, the makers of Paxil, was the first culprit to be held accountable. To date, the company has paid out more than $2 billion in verdicts and settlements. Victims are still filing new cases against the manufacturers of Paxil. GlaxoSmithKline is not the only company going to court, though. New litigation against the manufacturers of Prozac, Zoloft, Celexa, Lexapro, Effexor, and Pristiq has begun, in light of the new evidence.
One of the major causes of these birth defects relates to the ability for SSRIs to easily cross the human placenta. Researchers conclude that this is the cause of congenital birth defects and developmental delays. Manufacturers introduced the group of SNRI antidepressant drugs shortly after SSRIs, and they cause similar birth defects. Litigation has commenced against these drugs as well.
Our Denver Dangerous Drug Attorneys Can Help
If your family has been affected by SSRIs or SNRIs taken during pregnancy, please contact our law firm for a free consultation. At Zaner Harden Law, we work with experts and attorneys across the country to ensure these drug makers are held responsible for the harm they caused so many families.
Contact Zaner Harden Law for a free and confidential consultation by calling (303) 563-5354. Or, you can complete our Free Case Evaluation Form and we will contact you.