Studies have shown that 3 percent of pregnant women are treated with antidepressants during gestation. This percentage is found to slightly increase after delivery of the baby, from 5-7 percent. Fluoxetine, paroxetine, sertraline, citalopram, and venlafaxine (VENF) are all serotonin reuptake inhibitors or serotonin and noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors that are most commonly prescribed during pregnancy. There is little information about these drugs and their potential harmful effects because experimental studies with these drugs are rare, despite the drug being categorized as drug level C by the FDA. The aim of a study done by the Institute of Experimental Pharmacology & Toxicology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, titled “Effect of Prenatal Administration of Venlafaxine on Postnatal Development of Rat Offspring”, was to investigate the effect of prenatal administration of VENF on early postnatal development of rat offspring.
Dubovicky writes “Pregnant female Wistar rats were treated with VENF from day 15 to 20 of gestation at the doses of 7.5, 37.5 and 70 mg/kg. Females were allowed to spontaneously deliver their pups. After delivery the pups were inspected for viability, gross malformation and they were weighed on day 0, 4 and 21 post partum. On day 21 post partum, the pups were killed, brains were removed from the skulls and blood samples were collected for biochemical assay (proteins, glucose-GOD, glucose-HEX, lactate dehydrogenase, aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase and total antioxidant status).” The study showed that Effexor exposure resulted in maternal intoxication that lead to decreased body weight gain of pregnant females. No morphological alterations were observed in the rat offspring, and no selected biochemical variables were determined.
This study may be used in an Effexor lawsuit to demonstrate that the manufacturer of Effexor knew, or should have know, that Effexor is associated with negative birth outcomes. If you or a loved one used Effexor during pregnancy and your child had a negative birth outcome, you may be entitled to significant financial compensation for injuries caused to your baby by no fault of your own.
For a free, no-obligation case consultation, contact our team of Effexor® birth defects lawyers at the information provided below. We have the experience, resources, and skills required to win the justice you deserve. Call today and see how we can help.
Our SSRI Birth Defects Lawsuit Information page is a great place to start if you have any questions about SSRIs and Birth Defects.