Effexor Birth Defects

Effexor birth defects may include PPHN and heart defects, and Effexor lawsuits may be filed by attorneys. If you have been adversely affected by the antidepressant Effexor, contact a qualified lawyer immediately.

According to recent studies, antidepressant drugs like Effexor may no longer be considered safe in the treatment of pregnant women. Effexor (venlafaxine) has been on the market in the U.S. since 1993, and is approved for the treatment of major depressive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and social anxiety disorder. Effexor is one of a group of antidepressant drugs called SNRIs (serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors), which act upon the neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain in order to relieve depression. Effexor is currently manufactured by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, which is a division of Pfizer, Inc. Although Effexor and other SNRI antidepressants are newer than their counterparts, SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors), and have shown slightly more success in treating depression, serious concerns have been raised about the safety of these drugs, especially when used in pregnancy. If you took Effexor while pregnant and your child was born with a major birth defect, contact an Effexor attorney to discuss your legal options.


Potential Effexor Birth Defects

According to Effexor birth defect studies, women who take the antidepressant Effexor may have a significantly increased risk of giving birth to children with one or more major birth defects. Among these possible Effexor birth defects are neural tube defects, PPHN, heart defects, cleft lip, anal atresia, cleft palate, omphalocele, craniosynostosis, and limb defects. Unfortunately, most birth defects occur in early pregnancy, before many women are even aware they are pregnant. And, because nearly half of all pregnancies are unplanned, all women of childbearing age taking Effexor may be at risk of unknowingly causing irreparable harm to their unborn child.


FDA Warnings and Effexor Side Effect Studies

In 2006, the New England Journal of Medicine published a study in which researchers found a shocking six-fold increased risk of PPHN among children whose mothers took certain antidepressant drug during the third trimester of pregnancy. In response to this study, the FDA issued a public health advisory that same year, warning patients and healthcare professionals about the increased risk of PPHN among children exposed to certain antidepressant drugs in utero. In 2007, the NEJM published two additional studies in an attempt to reveal the adverse effects of fetal exposure to antidepressant medications. According to the first study, women who took certain antidepressants in early pregnancy were nearly twice as likely to give birth to children with serious birth defects like club foot, anal atresia and limb defects. In the second study, researchers indicated that children exposed certain antidepressants in pregnancy were more than twice as likely to suffer from devastating birth defects like craniosynostosis, anencephaly and omphalocele.


Effexor and Pregnancy

Effexor has been classified by the FDA as a pregnancy category C medication, which means it has the potential to cause serious fetal harm when taken during pregnancy. If you are currently taking Effexor and you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, consult your physician immediately. It is never advised to abruptly stop taking a prescription drug without medical consent, as this may cause further harm to you or your child. However, with the help of your healthcare provider, you may be able to find a safer alternative to Effexor for treating your condition.


Effexor Attorneys for Birth Defects

Consumers expect their prescription drugs to effectively treat their condition without causing them any unnecessary harm. Unfortunately, there are some medications currently on the market that are associated with side effects so severe that they may significantly outweigh any possible benefits of the treatment. If you or a loved one has suffered from a birth defect which you believe to be linked to the antidepressant Effexor, contact an Effexor attorney to discuss your compensation options. You may have grounds to file an Effexor lawsuit against Wyeth Pharmaceuticals (Pfizer), 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, and you should not be held responsible for the resulting consequences. With the help of a qualified Effexor lawyer, victims of potential Effexor birth defects can protect their rights and hold the allegedly negligent drug maker liable for their injuries.

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