Consumer Alert: A large number of popular antidepressant medications have been linked to a severe heart birth defect known as tetralogy of Fallot. If you or a loved one has taken any of the drugs listed in this article while pregnant and given birth to a child with this condition, contact our antidepressant birth defects lawyers immediately.
What is it?
The term ‘tetralogy of Fallot’ is a congenital (present at birth) heart defect characterized by four key features:
- ventricular septal defects (VSD), commonly referred to as a ‘hole in the heart;’
- obstruction of blood flow from the right ventricle to the lungs (pulmonary stenosis);
- the aorta (major artery from the heart to the body) lies directly over the VSD;
- the right ventricle develops hypertrophy (thickened muscle).
Because of these defects, blood can’t get to the lungs easily, so the blood doesn’t get as much oxygen as it should. Because the aorta overrides the VSD, both oxygen-rich and oxygen-poor blood is pumped into the body. Babies born with unrepaired tetralogy of Fallot are often blue (cyanotic) because of the oxygen-poor blood that’s pumped throughout their body.
Antidepressants that may cause tetralogy of Fallot
The following antidepressants have been associated with the development of tetralogy of Fallot in children born to mothers who took them during pregnancy:
- Paxil (Paroxetine)
- Zoloft (Sertraline)
- Celexa (Citalopram)
- Prozac (Fluoxetine)
- Lexapro (Escitalopram)
- Symbyax (fluoxetine and olanzapine)
- Wellbutrin (Bupropion)
- Effexor (Venlafaxine)
Can the condition be treated?
Tetralogy of Fallot is treated with two kinds of surgery: one that provides temporary improvement by use of a shunt to give more blood flow to the lungs, and another that is a complete repair of the two most serious defects. sadly, children born with tetralogy of Fallot might require one or both surgeries in their lifetime to correct the condition. For more important information about tetralogy of Fallot, visit the American Heart Association.
Do I have an antidepressant birth defects lawsuit?
The Defective Drug & Products Liability Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in antidepressant birth defects lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new tetralogy of Fallot cases in all 50 states.