Transposition of the Great Arteries
Transposition of the Great Arteries (TGA) or Vessels is a rare congenital (present at birth) heart defect in which the two main arteries – the aorta and the pulmonary artery – that carry blood away from the heart are reversed (transposed). Normally the artery rises from the right ventricle and the aorta from the left, but TGA occurs when these large blood vessels have switched places. This condition may be found with other heart defects. TGA changes the way blood circulates through the body, causing oxygen-poor blood to be pumped to the tissues and oxygen-rich blood to be pumped back to the lungs, a reversal of the correct process. This results in the baby’s tissues experiencing a shortage of oxygen.
Anti-depressants: The maternal use of certain anti-depressants may be associated with a 40 percent increased the risk of TGA in exposed infants, according to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The anti-depressants linked to this and other birth defects may include:
Effexor, a similar anti-depressant, is also being researched for a possible link to an increased risk of transposition of the great arteries.
Babies with TGA must undergo surgery to correct the defect. Prior to the surgery, TGA may be managed with medication or an atrial septostomy, which allows for the baby’s body to receive more oxygen-rich blood. TGA may be corrected with an arterial switch operation or an atrial switch operation. The former is the most common and is performed within a month of birth. The arterial switch procedure entails the pulmonary artery and the aorta being moved to their normal positions.
During the atrial switch operation, the surgeon makes a tunnel between the heart’s two upper chambers. As a result, the right ventricle ends up pumping blood to the entire body, instead of to just the lungs. This surgery comes with more risks than the arterial switch operation.
Your Baby’s Rights
If your baby was born with TGA that may have been caused by exposure to prescription drugs before birth, your family deserves financial compensation. Although no amount of money will change what happened to your baby, compensation will help offset the current and future medical costs, as well as provide for the pain and suffering you and your baby have experienced. Filing a claim will also teach the manufacturers of unsafe medications that it is unacceptable to not warn parents of the risks associated with these drugs, including serious birth defects. Your suit may even prevent other families from suffering as yours has, by forcing the pharmaceutical company to change their drug’s label to warn parents of the potential risks.
You may be eligible for compensation to ease the financial burdens associated with your baby’s injury. Contact us today to set up a free consultation, during which we will listen to your story, answer any questions you may have and discuss your legal rights and options. If you choose us to represent you, we will work with you on a contingency fee basis; this means you pay nothing until we have secured compensation for you, either through a jury verdict or settlement.