Paxil and Prozac Pose Increased Risk for Heart Birth Defects

This shouldn’t come as a surprise, but that doesn’t mean it is any less of a breach of public trust.

Today, Finnish researchers warned doctors that they should avoid prescribing Paxil or Prozac to pregnant women, due to the potential risk of heart birth defects. In a study published in the Obstetric & Gynecology medical journal, researchers found that side effects of Prozac and Paxil use during pregnancy may include the risk of women giving birth to children with congenital heart defects. Both drugs belong to a class of antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).

Researchers looked at national data from Finland on 635,583 births occurring between 1996 and 2006, and found that 31 out of every 10,000 women who took Paxil during pregnancy gave birth to children with right ventricular outflow tract defects that affect blood flow from the right chambers of the heart to the rest of the body. This is more than four times the frequency of these birth defects among women who did not take Paxil. For those who took Prozac, 105 babies born out of every 10,000 had isolated ventrical septal defects, a hole between the left and right sides of the heart, which was more than double the rate of babies born to women who did not take the drug.

Importantly, the researchers also found that women who took any SSRI during pregnancy were more than twice as likely to give birth to a child with a neural tube defect; 22 out of every 10,000 newborns, as compared to 9 out of every 10,000 newborns born to women who did not take any SSRI during pregnancy. As my regular readers are aware, I have been aggressively litigating SSRI and anti-seizure medication birth defects for many years, including Lexapro, Celexa, Zoloft, Prozac, Paxil, Depakote and Topamax.

If you or someone you know has taken Paxil or Prozac, or any SSRI antidepressant, and given birth to a child with a birth defect, I urge you to contact me directly for a free, no-obligation evalaution of your claim.


About the Firm: The Michael Brady Lynch Firm is a trial firm with a focus on pharmaceutical mass tort cases involving SSRI and Anti-Seizure Medication Birth Defects such as Lexapro, Zoloft, Effexor, Prozac, Celexa, Paxil, Depakote and Topamax, as well as Actos Bladder Cancer and Fosamax Femur Fractures, and medical device cases including DePuy Hip and Trans-Vaginal Mesh cases. Contact us today if you or someone you know has experienced side effects involving these products.

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