Wellbutrin and Anal Atresia Side Effects

The antidepressant Wellbutrin may lead to side effects like anal atresia, resulting in injury lawsuits being filed by patients. Contact a Wellbutrin attorney for legal help.

anal-atresia-illustrationRecent studies have raised serious concerns about the safety of the antidepressant Wellbutrin, due to information suggesting the medication may cause serious side effects among patients. Wellbutrin has been available in the U.S. since 1985 and is currently manufactured by drug company GlaxoSmithKline. Wellbutrin (bupropion) is considered an atypical antidepressant and functions by inhibiting the reuptake of dopamine and norepinephrine, two neurotransmitters in the brain responsible for controlling mood. Wellbutrin is typically prescribed to patients suffering from conditions like major depressive disorder and seasonal affective disorder, a type of depression occurring mostly in the winter and fall. Since its introduction, Wellbutrin has become one of the most commonly prescribed antidepressant drugs available. Unfortunately, an emerging body of research has indicated that Wellbutrin use in pregnancy may be linked to major birth defects, including anal atresia, among children. If you took Wellbutrin during pregnancy and your child was born with a birth defect like anal atresia, contact a Wellbutrin attorney to discuss your compensation options.

Anal Atresia Symptoms

Anal atresia is a birth defect characterized by an absent or blocked opening to the anus. In some cases, the rectum may end in a blind pouch that fails to connect to the colon, while in other cases, it may have openings to the bladder, urethra, the vagina in girls, or the base of the penis in boys. Common anal atresia symptoms include:
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Failure to pass stool within 24-48 hours after birth
  • Stool passing out of the vagina, base of the penis, scrotum or urethra

Anal Atresia Treatment and Complications

Children affected by anal atresia require surgery to repair the defect and correct any other organs affected by the malformation. Although most children born with anal atresia make a full recovery after surgery, some infants may continue to struggle with complications like constipation, even with treatment. Because many children diagnosed with anal atresia are plagued by additional birth defects, typically those affecting the spine, genitals or urinary tract, all children with this malformation should be tested for other congenital defects.

Wellbutrin Side Effect Studies

In 1997, Wellbutrin maker GlaxoSmithKline developed the Bupropion Pregnancy Registry to examine the outcomes of pregnancies involving women who took the antidepressant Wellbutrin while pregnant. By 2008, Glaxo indicated that 3.6% of the small group of children exposed to Wellbutrin during pregnancy were born with major birth defects. In 2007, the New England Journal of Medicine published a study in which researchers sought to examine the adverse effects of fetal exposure to certain antidepressant drugs. According to the report, women who took certain antidepressants during the first trimester of pregnancy were nearly twice as likely to give birth to children with birth defects like anal atresia, limb defects and club foot.

Wellbutrin During Pregnancy

The FDA has classified Wellbutrin as a pregnancy category C medication, which means it may cause serious fetal harm when taken during pregnancy. If you are currently taking Wellbutrin and you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, contact your physician to discuss your treatment options. 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 doctor, you may be able to find a safer alternative to Wellbutrin for treating your condition.

Wellbutrin Attorneys for Anal Atresia Side Effects

Anal atresia is a serious side effect which can have life-altering complications for affected children. If you or a loved one has suffered from a side effect like anal atresia, which you believe to be associated with the antidepressant Wellbutrin, contact a Wellbutrin attorney for legal help. You may have grounds to file a Wellbutrin lawsuit against GlaxoSmithKline 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 GlaxoSmithKline are responsible for the safety of their medications, even after they enter the market, and should be held accountable for any adverse side effects sustained by consumers of their products. Unfortunately, this isn't always the case. By hiring a qualified Wellbutrin lawyer to represent your case, you can protect your rights and collect the compensation you deserve.

Prescription Drugs in The News