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Paxil May Cause Birth Defects

If you are currently taking Paxil or have taken this drug in the past, you need to be aware that this medication may cause birth defects. For the past few years, new information has emerged that links Paxil, which is an antidepressant, to serious birth defects.

Paxil, also known as Paroxetine, contains selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) that are used to fight depression. This antidepressant is believed to have caused such birth defects as:

  • Cardiac defects
  • Persistent pulmonary hypertension
  • Neural-tube defects
  • Abnormally shaped skull (craniosynostosis)
  • Club foot
  • Infant omphalocele
  • Anal atresia

Researchers believe that there is an increased risk of Paxil birth defects when this drug is taken during the first trimester of pregnancy. Recent studies have shown that women taking the SSRI antidepressant, Paxil, during the first trimester were one and a half to two times more likely to have an infant with heart defects than women who did not take these drugs.

In 2006, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an alert after a study by the New England Journal of Medicine found that mothers who took SSRI antidepressants after the 20th week of pregnancy were six times more likely to have infants born with persistent pulmonary hypertension than mothers who did not take the drug. According to the FDA’s alert, babies born with persistent pulmonary hypertension have a higher risk of morbidity and mortality.

Paxil is not the only drug that contains SSRIs. Celexa, Fluvoxamine, Lexapro, Prozac, Symbyax and Zoloft also contain the ingredient.

There have been several lawsuits filed against drug manufacturers regarding cases of SSRI antidepressants and birth defects. If you were taking Paxil or another SSRI antidepressant and your baby was affected, you may be able to hold the manufacturer accountable. You should contact an experienced Florida mass tort lawyer at the Law Offices of Lilly, O’Toole & Brown, LLP at (863) 683-1111 for expert legal advice. You may be able to recover compensation for your child’s injuries.