Sunday, February 19, 2012

Anti-Depressant Medication and Birth Injuries by Wendy Moyer

Modern anti-depressant medications were first made available in 1987. Known as SSRIs - Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors - these are medications that are only available with a prescription. They were originally formulated to relieve both depression as well as anxiety disorders.

However, over the course of time doctors began to prescribe them for a wide variety of additional psychiatric and physical maladies. This conditions included alcoholism, bulimia nervosa, obesity, OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder), PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), and borderline personality disorder.

Many of today's doctors prescribe SSRIs because they feel that they are safer, more effective and tolerated better than other drugs.

The SSRIs that are most prescribed by doctors include Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil, Celexa, and Lexapro.

Generally, SSRIs are relatively safe medications. Side effects, if any, usually aren't dangerous. For the most part it's rare for a doctor to discontinue or even reduce the dosage because of a patient's negative reaction.

However, this is definitely not the case when expectant mothers take SSRIs during their pregnancy. This class of drug can actually pose considerable health risks for their unborn child.

A study involving SSRIs and pregnancy was published in 2006. After the study was published the FDA issued an advisory.

The study, can be found in the New England Journal of Medicine. It compared expectant women who had taken SSRIs during the last 4 Ѕ months of their pregnancy with women who either did not take any SSRIs during any time of their pregnancy or had discontinued taking them within the first 4 Ѕ months of being pregnant.

After the results were tallied the study disclosed that women who took SSRIs during the second half of their pregnancy had a 600% greater chance of delivering a baby with PPHN (Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn). PPHN is a life threatening condition. This often fatal condition affects a newborn's capacity to breathe.

Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn restricts the flow of blood to an infant's lungs and the quantity of oxygen that enters the baby's bloodstream. It requires immediate attention because it usually results in severe respiratory failure.

In addition there were other complications that were not as severe in 20% to 30% of the babies that were born to women who had taken SSRIs during the latter part of their pregnancies.

In addition to SSRIs there are quite a few other medications that have been associated with serious birth traumas when they were taken during pregnancy.

If your baby suffered a birth injury because of medications that your doctor prescribed then you may be able to take legal action to fight for your child's rights.

If you would like to seek justice on behalf of your child then you can take advantage of free consultation offered by an experienced birth injury lawyer.