Birth Defect Drugs
The March of Dimes estimates that there are around 150,000 babies in the United States born with birth defects annually. Other estimates indicate that as many as three percent of all newborn U.S. babies have a major birth defect. Birth defects are the top cause of death for newborns and there are more than 4,000 different documented types of birth defects.
Birth defects can result from genetic factors as well as from environmental hazards babies are exposed to in the womb during development. Unfortunately, one of the most common causes of birth defects in infants is medication taken while a mother is pregnant. There are many birth defect drugs that can cause complications and manufacturers don’t always properly warn patients that a drug is dangerous during pregnancy. If you or a loved one was harmed by a birth-defect injury as a result of a dangerous medication, it is important for you to understand your legal rights. A Boston birth defect lawyer at the Attorney Injury Group can help.
Types of Birth Defect Drugs
Approximately 90 percent of women reportedly use over-the-counter or prescription drug medications at some point while they are pregnant. Many of these medications are relatively safe and doctors need to ensure they are prescribing only drugs approved for use by pregnant women. However, some other medications have proven to be extremely dangerous and to cause a variety of birth defects. For example, some common birth defect drugs include:
These and other medications such as Paxil can have a debilitating effect on a baby during development. In 2005, for example, the FDA warned that the use of Paxil during a pregnancy’s first trimester could increase the risk of a birth defect affecting the heart. A large 2006 study also identified a doubled risk of a baby developing Primary Pulmonary Hypertension when the mother took Prozac during pregnancy.
What to Do If Your Child Suffers a Birth Defect
If your child develops a birth defect, you may have the right to receive compensation from the drug manufacturer. While you do not have to demonstrate that the manufacturer was negligent, it is necessary to show a clear link between the use of the medication and the injury or damage during fetal development.
Evidence including drug recalls; FDA alerts and medical records can help to demonstrate that a drug is the cause of a birth defect. When a victim is able to prove his case, he can recover compensation for medical costs, lost income, pain and suffering, emotional distress and/or wrongful death of the baby. Money obtained through a birth defects lawsuit can provide necessary funds to get the child help over the course of his lifetime.