Limb Defects and Paxil Side Effects

Limb defects and Paxil side effects may be associated when Paxil is used during pregnancy and attorneys are filing Paxil lawsuits in the US.  Contact a Paxil lawyer if your family has been affected by limb defetcs or Paxil birth defects to find out what legal options you may have.

Paxil side effect studies and FDA warnings have raised concerns about the safety of Paxil in treating pregnant women, due to data suggesting the antidepressant may cause serious birth defects, including limb defects, among children. Paxil is an SSRI antidepressant, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, which acts upon the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain to relieve depression and improve certain mood disorders. Paxil (paroxetine) entered the U.S. market in 1992 as a treatment for major depressive disorder, and has since been approved to treat obsessive-compulsive disorder, major panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and social anxiety disorder. Paxil is currently manufactured by drug company GlaxoSmithKline. Despite new information about potential Paxil side effects, particularly Paxil birth defects in children exposed to the drug during pregnancy, studies show that more than 80,000 pregnant women in the U.S. are prescribed SSRI antidepressants like Paxil in any given year. If you took Paxil while pregnant and your child was born with a severe side effect like a limb defect, contact a Paxil lawyer to discuss your options for legal recourse.

Limb Defects Described

A limb defect is caused by the failure of an entire upper or lower limb, or portion of a limb, to develop properly during fetal development. Limb defects can present in any number of ways, including: complete absence of the limb, overgrowth (the limb is much larger than normal), undergrowth (the limb is much smaller than normal), failure to separate (webbed fingers or toes), duplication (extra fingers or toes), pr constriction band syndrome (a constricting band of tissue forms around the limb, restricting blood flow and tissue growth).

Club Foot Limb Defect

One of the most common types of limb defect is club foot, a birth defect in which one or both of a child's feet are smaller than normal and internally rotated at the ankle. In most cases, this malformation is painless at birth, although it can become an extremely debilitating condition later in life. Without treatment, the affected child may begin to walk on his ankles or the outsides of his feet, causing painful sores or callouses to develop. Children born with club foot may also struggle with side effects like restricted calf muscle growth and an awkward gait.

Limb Defect Treatment and Prognosis

Although the appropriate treatment for limb defects depends on the type of malformation, the main goal of limb defect treatment is to restore the normal appearance and function of the limb. In order to do so, the child may require a combination of treatments, including surgery, orthotics, prosthetics and rehabilitation. In instances of severe limb malformations, the defect may be impossible to correct, in which case treatment would focus on helping the child adapt to the limb defect.

FDA Warnings and Paxil Side Effect Studies

In 2005, the FDA issued a public health advisory warning patients and physicians about the increased risk of congenital birth defects, namely heart defects, in children whose mothers take Paxil in early pregnancy. In 2006, the FDA issued an additional public health advisory, warning the public about the increased risk of PPHN (persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn) in children exposed to an SSRI like Paxil after the twentieth week of pregnancy. PPHN is a serious heart and lung side effect in which a child's circulation continues to bypass the lungs after birth, depriving the rest of the body of oxygen. In 2007, the New England Journal of Medicine published a significant study in which researchers found a nearly two-fold increased risk of birth defects like limb defects, club foot and anal atresia in children born to women who took an SSRI like Paxil during the first trimester of pregnancy. Most birth defects occur during the first trimester or pregnancy, before many women are even aware they are pregnant. Because nearly half of all pregnancies are unplanned, all women of childbearing age taking Paxil may be at risk of unknowingly causing irreversible harm to their unborn child.

Paxil Use in Pregnancy

Paxil has been classified by the FDA 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. If you are currently taking Paxil and you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, consult your physician immediately. You should never suddenly stop taking a prescription drug, as this may cause further harm to you or your child. However, with your doctor's help, you may be able to find a safer alternative to Paxil for treating your condition.

Paxil Attorneys for Limb Defect Side Effects

Limb defect side effects like club foot can severely affect a child's quality of life, potentially preventing the affected child from performing simple tasks like grasping objects and enjoying recreational activities like playing with toys. If you or a loved one has suffered from a limb defect like club foot and you believe Paxil to be the cause, contact a Paxil attorney to discuss your legal options. You may have grounds to file a Paxil lawsuit against GlaxoSmithKline in order to seek financial compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. You are not at fault for any adverse side effects caused by a dangerous drug. By hiring a Paxil lawyer to represent your case, you can protect your rights and collect the compensation you deserve.

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