Iniencephaly and Depakote

Iniencephaly Depakote side effects may have resulted in Depakote use during pregnancy.  Attorneys are filing lawsuits on behalf of birth defect affected families.  Contact a Depakote attorney to explore you lawsuit and class action options.

According to FDA warnings and Depakote side effect studies, women who take the anticonvulsant drug Depakote may have a significantly increased risk of giving birth to children with devastating birth defects like iniencephaly. Depakote has been available in the U.S. since the drug garnered FDA approval in 1983. Since that time, Depakote has been approved for the treatment of epilepsy, seizures, bipolar disorder and migraine headaches. Depakote (valproic acid) functions by inhibiting the firing of certain impulses in the brain which are responsible for causing seizure-related disorders. Depakote is currently manufactured by drug company Abbott Laboratories. Although Depakote has become one of the most commonly prescribed anticonvulsant drugs on the market, new information about potential Depakote birth defects suggests that the drug may no longer be considered safe in the treatment of pregnant women or women of childbearing age. If you took Depakote while pregnant and your child was born with a fatal birth defect like iniencephaly, contact a Depakote attorney to discuss your legal options.

Iniencephaly Symptoms

Iniencephaly is a rare and devastating type of neural tube birth defect in which a child's head is so severely retroflexed (bent backward) that the face looks upward. In newborns with iniencephaly, the neck is absent, the skin of the face is connected directly to the skin of the chest, and the scalp is directly to the skin of the back. Children born with iniencephaly may also be abnormally short with a disproportionately large head and severe defects of the spine.

Iniencephaly Prognosis

There is no treatment for iniencephaly and affected newborns rarely survive for more than a few hours after birth. Most children with iniencephaly are born with additional disorders including anencephaly, heart defects, hydrocephalus, absence of the mandible, cleft lip and cleft palate, and gastrointestinal malformations. Furthermore, the extreme distortion of the child's body may pose a significant danger to the mother during pregnancy.

Depakote and Side Effect Studies

In 2009, the FDA issued a safety announcement warning patients and healthcare providers about the increased risk of certain birth defects among infants exposed to Depakote during pregnancy. According to the FDA warning, infants born to women who take Depakote while pregnant may be significantly more likely to develop neural tube birth defects like iniencephaly and spina bifida, craniofacial defects and heart malformations. This FDA notice was based on information provided by the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry, which indicated a four-times increased risk of major malformations in babies born to women with epilepsy who take Depakote, compared to babies born to women with epilepsy who take other anticonvulsant drugs. Approximately 1 in 1,500 children is born with a neural tube birth defect like iniencephaly in the U.S. According to the FDA, the risk of neural tube birth defects like iniencephaly is considerably higher in children whose mothers take Depakote during the first trimester of pregnancy, increasing to an alarming 1 in 20 children.

Depakote and Pregnancy

The FDA has classified Depakote as a pregnancy category D medication, which means there is positive human evidence of the drug's potential to cause serious harm to a fetus when taken during pregnancy. Due to the potential for Depakote to cause severe fetal harm, the FDA has advised physicians to avoid prescribing Depakote to pregnant women, especially for conditions not usually associated with permanent injury or death. If you are currently taking Depakote and you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, consult your healthcare provider to discuss alternative treatment options with a lower risk of major birth defects.

Depakote Attorneys for Iniencephaly Side Effects

Iniencephaly is a catastrophic and incurable birth defect which may be linked to the use of Depakote during pregnancy. No pharmaceutical drug should cause life-threatening harm to consumers or their unborn children. If you or a loved one has suffered from a side effect or birth defect like iniencephaly, contact a Depakote attorney to discuss the benefits of filing a Depakote lawsuit against Abbott Laboratories. The main goal of Depakote lawsuits and Depakote class action lawsuits is to seek financial compensation for your injuries, the medical costs of treating your injuries, and the pain and suffering endured by you and your family. You are not at fault for any serious injuries caused by a pharmaceutical drug. With the help of an experienced Depakote lawyer, you can collect the compensation you deserve and bring public attention to the potentially harmful nature of pharmaceutical drugs like Depakote.

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