Lexapro and Anal Atresia Side Effects

Lexapro anal atresia side effects can cause serious complications for affected children, and injury lawsuits may be filed as a result. Consult a Lexapro lawyer to discuss your legal options.

anal-atresia-illustrationAn emerging body of research has indicated that women who take antidepressant drugs like Lexapro while pregnant may have a significantly increased risk of giving birth to children with birth defects like anal atresia. Lexapro belongs to a class of antidepressant drugs called SSRIs, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, which act upon the neurotransmitter serotonin to relieve depression. Lexapro (escitalopram) has been on the market in the U.S. since 2002 and is currently manufactured by Forest Laboratories. Since it was introduced, Lexapro has been approved by the FDA for the treatment of major depressive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder, and is one of the most frequently prescribed antidepressant drugs available. Despite its popularity however, information suggesting that severe side effects and Lexapro are linked, including birth defects among exposed children, has raised serious concerns about the safety of the antidepressant drug. If you took Lexapro while pregnant and your child was born with a side effect or an anal atresia birth defect, contact a Lexapro attorney for legal help.

Anal Atresia Symptoms

Anal atresia, or imperforate anus, is a type of birth defect in which the opening to the anus is blocked or missing altogether. In some children with anal atresia, the rectum may end in a blind pouch with no connection to the colon, or it may have an opening to the vagina, urethra, bladder, or base of the penis. Common symptoms of anal atresia include a swollen abdomen, failure to pass stool within 24-48 hours after birth, an anal opening near the vagina in girls, or stool passing out of the urethra, vagina, base of the penis, or scrotum.

Anal Atresia Treatment

Treatment for anal atresia involves surgery to reconstruct the anus and to repair any other organs affected by the malformation. Children born with anal atresia should also be tested for other problems after birth, as this condition is often accompanied by other birth defects, particularly those affecting the genital, spine and urinary tract. Most children with anal atresia make a full recovery after surgery. Unfortunately, if this defect is left untreated, the affected child may suffer from additional complications, including intestinal blockage, constipation and bowel incontinence.

FDA Warnings and Lexapro Side Effect Studies

In 2006, the FDA issued a public health advisory warning patients and healthcare providers about the increased risk of a major birth defect called PPHN among children exposed to SSRI antidepressants like Lexapro in pregnancy. This FDA warning was based on the results of a New England Journal of Medicine study published earlier that year, in which researchers found a shocking six-fold increased risk of PPHN in children whose mothers took an SSRI after the twentieth week of pregnancy. The following year, the NEJM published two additional studies in an attempt to reveal the harmful effects of fetal exposure to SSRIs like Lexapro. According to the first study, women who took Lexapro or another SSRI during the first trimester of pregnancy were nearly twice as likely to give birth to children with serious side effects like anal atresia, limb defects and club foot.

Lexapro in Pregnancy

The FDA has classified Lexapro as a pregnancy category C medication, which means it has the potential to cause serious harm to a fetus when taken during pregnancy. If you are currently taking Lexapro and you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, consult your healthcare provider to discuss alternative treatment options. You should never suddenly 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 doctor you may be able to find a safer way to treat your condition.

Lexapro Attorneys for Anal Atresia Side Effects

All children deserve to live a happy and healthy life. Unfortunately, birth defects like anal atresia rob children of this right, sometimes forcing them to deal with long-term pain and suffering and even lifetime medical care. If you or a loved one has suffered from a serious side effect and you believe Lexapro to be the cause, contact a qualified Lexapro attorney to discuss your options for legal recourse. You may have grounds to file a Lexapro lawsuit against Forest Laboratories in order to seek financial compensation for your injuries, the medical expenses resulting from injury treatment, and the pain and suffering endured by you and your family. Drug companies like Forest are responsible for the safety of their medications, and should be held liable for any adverse side effects sustained by consumers of their products. Unfortunately, some pharmaceutical companies intentionally conceal the more serious side effects of their drugs in an attempt to make their products more appealing to consumers. With the help of an experienced Lexapro lawyer, victims of potential Lexapro side effects can protect their rights and collect the compensation they deserve.

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