Antidepressants known as Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) — such as Prozac, Effexor, Lexapro, Celexa and Zoloft — are among the most popular on the market, with U.S. prescriptions numbering in the tens of millions. But since the drugs’ introduction, researchers have come to realize that they carry a hidden hazard in the form of potential SSRI birth defects for the children of pregnant users.
If you or someone you love has suffered a SSRI birth defect as a result of taking Zoloft, legal remedies may be available to you. Please contact a Lopez McHugh SSRI birth defect attorney today.
What Are the Risks Associated with SSRI Birth Defects?
In 2006, the highly respected New England Journal of Medicine published a study by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showing that babies born to mothers who took SSRIs during the second half of pregnancy had a significantly increased risk of being born with persistent pulmonary hypertension, a potentially life-threatening respiratory disorder.
According to the study, the use of SSRIs during the second half of pregnancy may increase the risk of the disorder by as much as six times. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have named other possible SSRI birth defects including:
- Anencephaly, or birth without a forebrain
- Omphalocele, or birth with organs on the outside of the body
- Craniosynostosis, or the premature closing of the bones of the infant’s skull
- Delayed development of bones
Newborns also suffered from withdrawal symptoms, including irritability, high-pitched or weak crying, tremors, poor muscle tone, disturbed sleep, and respiratory distress.