The popular SSRI antidepressant drug Paxil (Generic: paroxetine) used by millions of Americans has been linked to suicide, self-mutilation/harm and variety of severe birth defects including Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension (PPHN), heart, lung, abdominal and cranial defects.
Paxil Update 7/2/12: The U.K.’s largest drugmaker announced today that it has reached an agreement with the U.S. Government and a number of states to conclude several massive federal investigations involving Paxil, Avandia and Wellbutrin. In total, GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) will make payments totaling $3 billion, which will reportedly be covered by existing provisions and funded through existing cash resources. Click here to learn more.
Paxil Birth Defects Update 5/30/12: A new study suggests that women who take SSRI antidepressants during pregnancy are more likely to give birth prematurely, or have babies who have seizures shortly after being born. The research found that expecting mothers who filled two or three prescriptions during their second trimester tended to have babies that stayed in the womb four to five days less than other babies. Click here to learn more.
Paxil Update 4/27/12: Research published in this week’s online edition of the journal Frontiers in Evolutionary Psychology has called into question the safety and efficacy of SSRI antidepressants. The study concludes that the risks involved with taking SSRIs outweigh any potential benefits, and that the medications do more harm than good. Click here to learn more.
Paxil Update 3/23/12: In addition to having the potential to cause serious birth defects in babies born to mothers who take the drugs during pregnancy, SSRI antidepressants like Paxil have also been found in a new study to increase the risk of high blood pressure in pregnant women. The research indicates that SSRIs may increase the risk of hypertension beyond that what could be attributed to the depression and anxiety that likely drove the women to take the drugs in the first place. Click here to learn more.
If you or a loved one have taken Paxil or paroxetine while pregnant and given birth to a child with a congenital birth defect, you should contact us immediately. You may be entitled to compensation and we can help. Please note, we are no longer accepting suicide or self mutilation/harm claims but continue to provide the warning(s) on this page as a service to the American consumer.
SSRI Birth Defect Lawsuit Update: Our firm is now also accepting birth defect cases involving the following SSRI antidepressants — Celexa, Lexapro, Paxil, Prozac, Symbyax, and Zoloft.
FDA Video: SSRI Antidepressant Birth Defects
Below is an excellent video produced by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), which warns patients and physicians of serious, life-threatening birth defects linked to SSRI antidepressants.
Read the Full Transcript: SSRI Antidepressant Birth Defects
Congenital Heart Defects
In December, 2005 the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Public Health Advisory regarding Paxil, which was based upon two separate studies done by U.S. and Swedish researchers. The FDA warned doctors and patients that exposure to Paxil during pregnancy posed a serious risk to the fetus and was linked to an increased risk of Congenital Heart Defects.
More specifically, the most common form of Paxil induced heart birth defects observed by our firm has been either atrial septal defects or ventricular septal defects.
Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn (PPHN)
Recently, The New England Journal of Medicine released the results of a case-controlled study wherein Paxil was linked to an increased risk of an infant being born with Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn (PPHN). More specifically, the study showed that PPHN was six-times more common in infants whose mothers took an SSRI antidepressant during pregnancy compared to babies whose mothers did not take an antidepressant.
Shortly after the aforementioned study was released, the FDA issued another Public Health Advisory warning that exposure to Paxil during pregnancy posed a serious risk to the fetus and was linked to an increased risk of PPHN.
Abdominal & Cranial Birth Defects
According to information released from the National Birth Defects Prevention Study of Infants, SSRI antidepressants like Paxil (accounted for 36% of all SSRI exposures) may cause two separate congenital abnormalities called Omphalocele and Craniosynostosis.
Omphalocele is a congenital (present at birth) abdominal wall defect at the base of the umbilical cord (umbilicus); the infant is born with a sac protruding through the defect which contains small intestine, liver, and large intestine.
Craniosynostosis is a congenital (present at birth) defect that causes one or more sutures on a baby’s head to close earlier than normal. Sutures are connections that separate each individual skull bones. The early closing of a suture leads to an abnormally shaped head.
Results from the study prompted GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) to send a letter to doctors and healthcare professionals advising them of a change to the Pregnancy subsection of the PRECAUTIONS section in the labels for PAXIL regarding the increased risk of Omphalocele and Craniosynostosis.
Paxil and Autism
In June 2011, a study conducted by researchers at Kaiser Permanente found that taking SSRI antidepressant drugs like Paxil during pregnancy may significantly increase the risk of giving birth to an autistic child. The study involved 298 children diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and a control group of 1,507 children. Researchers found that women who took an SSRI antidepressant while pregnant – especially during the first trimester – were twice as likely to give birth to a child with an ASD than mothers who did not. Taking these figures into consideration, the results of the study seem to suggest a strong link between SSRIs and autism.
Suicide, Self-Mutilation and Harm
The FDA and The Center for Drug Evaluation and Research is currently reviewing reports of an increased risk of suicide, suicidal thinking and attempts related to the use of the drug Paxil in “children, adolescents and adults” with major depressive disorder (MDD).
These agencies are also looking at an increased incidence of self-mutilation, self-harm and related agitation surrounding the antidepressant drug Paxil belonging to the class of drugs known as SSRI’s.
Paxil Side Effects
- Birth Defects
- Congenital Heart Defects, Atrial or Ventricular Septal Defects (hole in heart)
- Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn (PPHN)
- Abdominal Birth Defects / Omphalocele
- Cranial Birth Defects / Craniosynostosis
- Suicide, Attempted Suicide, Self-Mutilation and Self-Harm
Birth Defects Linked to Antidepressants
Paxil and other antidepressant have been linked to the following birth defects:
- Atrial Septal Defects (ASD)
- Ventricular Septal Defects (VSD)
- Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn (PPHN)
- Tricuspid Valve (Ebstein’s Anomaly)
- Mitral Valve Prolapse
- Transposition of the Great Arteries (TGA)
- Transposition of the Great Vessels (TGV)
- Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF)
- Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS)
- Hypoplastic Right Heart Syndrome (HRHS)
- Tricuspid Atresia
- Aortic Stenosis
- Pulmonary Atresia (PA)
- Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA)
- Coarctation of the Aorta
- Truncus Arteriosus
- Tricuspid Valve Stenosis
- Heart Murmur
- Pulmonary Stenosis
- Gastroschisis – abdominal wall defect
- Esophageal Stenosis
- Anal Atresia
- Spina Bifida
Do I have a Paxil Lawsuit?
The Defective Drug Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus exclusively on the representation of plaintiffs in Paxil lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new Paxil birth defect cases in all 50 states.
If you or a loved one have taken Paxil or paroxetine while pregnant and given birth to a child with a congenital birth defect, you should contact us immediately. You may be entitled to compensation and we can help.