About Zoloft and Paxil Birth Defects
As a result of the adverse findings in the studies, the FDA has asked the manufacturers of Paxil®, to strengthen the drugs’ pregnancy category from C to D.
Category D drugs are those that research has demonstrated can cause danger to the fetus. These Pregnancy Categories help doctors decide whether on not to prescribe certain drugs during pregnancy. The D category tells doctors that studies have been done in humans which have found evidence of birth defects. The C category says that no evidence has been found in Human studies, but there has been some evidence from animal studies.
The makers of Paxil® have added new information concerning research into the side effects of the drug.
Zoloft® & Effexor® are still listed as a Pregnancy Category C drug unlike Paxil® which has already been changed to the more serious Category D. As a category C medicine, Zoloft® could potentially be the source of major risks to unborn children, especially when taken in the third trimester.
The U.S. FDA’s pregnancy category system is used to detail the possible risks presented to a fetus while a specific medicine is taken during a pregnancy. Category C includes medicines that have yet to have well-controlled studies in humans, though animal reproductive studies have shown adverse effects on the fetus.
Nevertheless, the FDA explains that Category C medicines may possess potential benefits that justify its use during pregnancy, despite potential side effects. Although some doctors may continue to freely prescribe Zoloft® & Effexor® to pregnant patients, it remains the patient’s responsibility to decide if the benefits of the medicine are worth the potential risks.
A study recently published in Clinical Epidemiology, found that taking Zoloft®, Paxil® & Effexor® while pregnant, doubles or in some cases quadruples the risk of birth defects. The study looked at over 200,000 pregnant women. The authors found that the risk of serious heart malformations was more than doubled when a pregnant woman took an SSRI, like Paxil® and Zoloft®, in their first trimester of pregnancy. The risk was even greater with certain types of SSRI’s. Zoloft® was found to triple the risk of heart malformations. With respect to Zoloft®, this is the third study showing heart defects are significantly increased with use of the drug in pregnancy.
If you or a loved one has given birth to a child with birth defects after taking Zoloft®, Paxil® & Effexor®, you may be entitled to payment for medical expenses, pain and suffering associated with possible Zoloft®, Paxil® & Effexor® birth complications.There is a time limit and you may be entitled to a cash award.