Zoloft and Anal Atresia Side Effects

Anal atresia birth defects may be linked to Zoloft side effects when taken during pregnancy.  If your family was affected by Zoloft side effect like anal atresia, contact a Zoloft attorney as soon as possible.

anal-atresia-illustrationResearchers have indicated that children who are exposed to antidepressant drugs like Zoloft may have an increased risk of developing serious side effects, including birth defects like anal atresia. Zoloft belongs to a group of antidepressant drugs called SSRIs, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors. These medications work by increasing the level of serotonin in the brain, thereby relieving depression and improving certain mood disorders. Zoloft is currently manufactured by Pfizer, and has been FDA-approved for the treatment of major depressive disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic attacks, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. As of 2007, Zoloft was the most frequently prescribed antidepressant drug on the market in the U.S. Unfortunately, recent studies have suggested that Zoloft and other antidepressant drugs may no longer be considered safe, especially in the treatment of pregnant women. If you took Zoloft while pregnant and your child was born with a birth defect like anal atresia, contact a Zoloft attorney to discuss your legal options.

Anal Atresia Symptoms

Anal atresia is a congenital malformation characterized by an opening to the anus that is blocked or that is missing altogether. In some children born with anal atresia, the rectum may end in a blind pouch that doesn't connect to the colon. In others, the rectum may have openings to the urethra, bladder, vagina in girls, or base of the penis or scrotum in boys. Common symptoms of anal atresia include a swollen abdomen, failure to pass stool within 24-48 hours after birth, and stool passing out of the scrotum, vagina, urethra, or base of the penis.

Anal Atresia Treatment and Complications

Children with anal atresia typically require reconstructive surgery to repair the anus, and to repair any other organs the rectum may be connected to. Babies born with anal atresia who receive prompt treatment typically make a full recovery. Unfortunately, many children born with this malformation are plagued by additional birth defects, namely those of the spine, genitals and urinary tract. Even with anal atresia treatment, some affected children may struggle with constipation, intestinal blockage and incontinence.

FDA Warnings and Zoloft Side Effect Studies

The New England Journal of Medicine published an SSRI side effect study in 2006, in which researchers found an alarming six-fold increased risk of the severe heart and lung defect PPHN among children exposed to SSRI drugs like Zoloft after the twentieth week of pregnancy. Shortly after this study was published, the FDA issued a public health advisory warning patients and healthcare professionals about the increased risk of PPHN in infants whose mothers take Zoloft or other SSRIs in pregnancy. The following year, the NEJM published an additional study in which researchers sought to examine the possible link between SSRI antidepressants and major birth defects. According to the report, women who took an SSRI drug like Zoloft in early pregnancy were nearly twice as likely to give birth to children with birth defects like anal atresia, club foot and limb defects.

Zoloft Use During Pregnancy

Zoloft has been classified by the FDA as a pregnancy category C medication, which means it may cause severe harm to a fetus if taken during pregnancy. If you are currently taking Zoloft and you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, consult your physician to discuss alternative treatment options. You should never stop taking a prescription drug without medical consent, 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 way to treat your medical condition.

Zoloft Attorneys for Anal Atresia Side Effects

Anal atresia is a serious birth defect, and treatment for this malformation can result in overwhelming medical expenses. If you or a loved one has suffered from a potential Zoloft side effect like anal atresia, contact a qualified Zoloft attorney for legal guidance. You may have grounds to file a Zoloft lawsuit against Pfizer in order to seek financial compensation for your injuries, pain and suffering, and medical expenses. You are not at fault for any injuries caused by a dangerous pharmaceutical drug. Drug companies like Pfizer 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 drug companies intentionally withhold dangerous drug information, in an attempt to avoid a drug recall or other negative consequences. By hiring a qualified Zoloft lawyer to represent your case, you can collect the compensation you deserve and protect yourself from further harm.

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