Lexapro, a popular SSRI antidepressant, has been prescribed to upwards of 18 million adults since its release in 2002. As an selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), Lexapro is believed to improve mood problems through treating chemical imbalances in the brain. However, medical studies conducted over the last several years suggest that when taken during pregnancy, Lexapro (and other SSRIs) can result in an elevated risk of an infant developing one or more congenital, meaning present at birth, defects. Because Lexapro can move through the placenta during fetal maturation, it is possible for the medication to negatively affect formation of an unborn child. In addition to Lexapro, other SSRIs that can potentially increase risk to an infant include: Zoloft, Celexa, Paxil, and Prozac.
In 2006, the United States Food and Drug Administration issued a safety alert regarding the use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (including Lexapro) in the treatment of depression during pregnancy. Case studies compiled between the years of 1998-2003 found a correlation between SSRI use by pregnant women and the likelihood that the baby would be born with Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension (PPHN). The study suggested that SSRI use during pregnancy resulted increased the risk of PPHN to the infant six times, when compared against women who did not use an antidepressant at any time during their pregnancy. After this warning, the FDA required SSRIs to change their labels in order to include information about these heightened risks.
Because Lexapro taken during pregnancy has been linked to such a wide spectrum of severe birth injuries, many parents choose to file antidepressant lawsuits. In developing a medication, drug companies have a responsibility to fully investigate any and all potential adverse effects associated with their product. In the case of Lexapro, many women do not believe that they were adequately informed of these risks prior to beginning treatment. When this results in having a child born with severe birth defects, a Lexapro lawsuit is one method by which they can be financially reimbursed for the financial and emotional expenses associated with their situations.
If your child was born with a serious birth deformity or congenital defect and the mother took Lexapro or other prescription medication during all or part of the pregnancy, you and your child may have a legal right to financial compensation through the filing of a Lexapro Pregnancy Lawsuit. Call the Willis Law Firm today, so that we can confidentially evaluate your potential claim free of charge. Currently, we are reviewing antidepressant birth defect cases nationwide and on a contingency fee basis. This means that you will incur no attorney or other legal fees unless a successful recovery is made.