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Spina Bifida & Depakote Birth Defects

Mothers who take the bipolar medication Depakote during pregnancy may have an increased risk of giving birth to a child with a severe birth defect called spina bifida.

Depakote & Spina Bifida

Free Depakote Case Evaluation: If you or a loved one has taken Depakote while pregnant and given birth to a child with birth defects, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a lawsuit and we can help.

What’s the problem?

For years there has been controversy over Depakote because of its potentially serious side effects. It is known to contribute to liver damage in certain patients and in children being treated for seizures. But perhaps the most pervasive side effect of Depakote is the increased risk for birth defects in children born to women who use the medication during pregnancy.

According to data provided by the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry, use of about 1 g/day of divalproex sodium during the first trimester of pregnancy is likened to a 4-fold increased risk for congenital malformations compared with other anti-epileptic drugs.

Perhaps the most serious congenital side effect associated with Depakote is spina bifida, a malformation or incomplete formation of the embryonic neural tube. The result is an infant born with incomplete spinal formation, allowing exposure of the spinal cord. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the estimated risk for spina bifida among infants born to mothers receiving valproate (a form of divalproex sodium) during the first trimester of pregnancy is 1% to 2% compared with 0.14% to 0.2% in the general population. While the percentages are all low, the increased risk caused by Depakote is a significant order of magnitude.

Depakote Birth Defects Update 1/24/13: A new study has determined that Depakote can cause lowered IQ’s and other cognitive deficiencies in children born to mothers who take the drug during pregnancy. Specifically, the research found that babies exposed to Depakote in the womb had IQ’s that were seven to 10 points lower than other children at age six, as well as reduced language skills and memory capacity. Click here to learn more.

Do I have a Depakote Birth Defects Lawsuit?

The Product Liability Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus exclusively on the representation of plaintiffs in Depakote birth defects lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.

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