Hypoplasia and Depakote

Hypoplasia and Depakote side effects when used during pregnancy have been possibly linked and Depakote attorneys are filing lawsuits on behalf of birth defect victims across the US.  If your child was born with hypoplasia and the fingers, midface, or nails, contact a Depakote lawyer to discuss compensation options.

An emerging body of research has suggested that children exposed to Depakote in utero may have an increased risk of developing severe birth defects like hypoplasia. Hypoplasia is a condition caused by a lack of cells in that particular area during pregnancy, affecting the development of virtually any organ or tissue. Depakote is currently manufactured by Abbott Laboratories and has become one of the most frequently prescribed anticonvulsant drugs on the U.S. market. Depakote (valproic) acid was approved by the FDA in 1983 and is approved for the treatment of epilepsy, seizures, bipolar disorder and migraine headaches. Depakote works by interfering with the firing of certain impulses in the brain, thereby preventing seizure-related episodes. Unfortunately, recent studies have suggested that Depakote side effects may no longer be safe in treating pregnant women or women of childbearing age. If you took Depakote while pregnant and your child was born with a side effect or birth defect, contact a Depakote attorney to discuss your legal options.

Hypoplasia of the Nails

Hypoplasia of the nails is a congenital malformation characterized by severely underdeveloped or missing fingernail or toenails. Because the nails perform important functions like protecting the nerves and blood vessels beneath the nail bed, children born with this birth defect are more susceptible to dangerous infections affecting the fingers and toes. There is currently no cure for hypoplasia of the nails, and treatment is typically geared towards alleviating the side effects of this malformation.

Hypoplasia of the Fingers

Hypoplasia of the fingers is a birth defect affecting the formation of a child's fingers or thumbs. This malformation is especially debilitating because children with underdeveloped fingers may be unable to participate in everyday activities or perform simple tasks like grasping objects or playing with toys. Surgery is typically required by children with hypoplasia of the fingers, which can effectively reconstruct the malformed fingers and restore the appearance and function of the child's hand.

Hypoplasia of the Midface

Hypoplasis of the midface is one of the most severe forms of hypoplasia, effecting the development of certain parts of a child's face. Children born with this birth suffer from malformed eye sockets, upper jaw and cheekbones. The rest of the child's face typically develops normally in utero, giving affected children the appearance of bulging eyes and a lower jaw that sticks out further than normal. Treatment for this birth defect involves multiple surgeries performed over a long period of time to gradually restore the appearance of the child's face.

Depakote and Side Effect Studies

In 2001, the New England Journal of Medicine published a study in which researchers examined the potential correlation between anticonvulsant drugs like Depakote and birth defects like hypoplasia. According to the study, 20.6% of infants exposed to one anticonvulsant drug during pregnancy developed birth defects, compared to 28% of infants exposed to two or more anticonvulsants, and 8.5% of infants exposed to no anticonvulsants in utero. Among the birth defects observed by researchers were hypoplasia of the midface, hypoplasia of the fingers and growth retardation. In 2009, the FDA issued an official safety announcement warning patients and healthcare providers about the increased risk of birth defects among infants exposed to Depakote during pregnancy. This FDA warning was based on data collected by the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry, which indicated that children whose mothers took Depakote while pregnant were four times more likely to develop major malformations and skeletal birth defects compared to children whose mothers took a different anticonvulsant during pregnancy.

Depakote Use in Pregnancy

The FDA has labeled Depakote a pregnancy category D medication, which means there is positive human evidence illustrating the drug's potential to cause serious harm to a fetus when taken during pregnancy. If you are currently taking Depakote and you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, consult your healthcare provider to discuss alternative treatment options. Your doctor may be able to help you find safer way to treat your condition.

Depakote Attorneys for Hypoplasia Side Effects

Being born with a birth defect like hypoplasia can severely affect a child's quality of life after birth and even in the future. If you or a loved one has suffered from a side effect or birth defect like hypoplasia, which you believe to be linked to Depakote, contact an experienced Depakote attorney to discuss your options for legal recourse. You may have grounds to file a Depakote lawsuit against Abbott Laboratories in order to seek financial compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. You are not at fault for any injuries caused by a dangerous pharmaceutical drug. By hiring a qualified Depakote lawyer to represent your case, you can collect the compensation you deserve and protect yourself from further harm.

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