In October 2009, an article by N. Lund et al. titled “Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor exposure in utero and pregnancy outcomes.” was published in Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine that intended “To investigate the effect of intrauterine selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) exposure on pregnancy outcomes.” Included in this class of medications are drugs like Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft, Effexor, Celexa, and others.
Studying women who presented for prenatal care in their hospital between 1989 and 2006, the team found 329 pregnant women who reported use of SSRIs during pregnancy, and compared their birth outcomes with 4902 women who did not use SSRIs during pregnancy but who had history of psychiatric illness, and about 52,000 women who neither used SSRIs nor had history of psychiatric illness.
Results showed that “Gestational age was 5 days (95% confidence interval [CI], -6 to -3) shorter and the odds ratio (OR) for preterm birth was 2.0 (95% CI, 1.3-3.2) in the women exposed to SSRIs compared with women with no history of psychiatric illness.” That is, children born to mothers who used SSRIs while pregnant were twice as likely to be born prematurely compared to women who had no psychiatric illness.
The team also found that “In utero-exposed newborns had increased risk of admission to the neonatal intensive care unit (OR, 2.4; 95% CI, 1.7-3.4) and of 5-minute Apgar scores of less than 8 (OR, 4.4; 95% CI, 2.6-7.6) compared with those not exposed.” This means that babies exposed to SSRIs before birth were 2.4-times as likely to require intensive care just after birth and were more than four times as likely to have poor neonatal adaptation.
Due to the fact that many women have used SSRIs during pregnancy unaware of the risk for poor neonatal outcomes and preterm birth, a number of SSRI birth defect lawsuits have been filed. If you or a loved one used SSRIs and gave birth to a child premature or who had a congenital malformation, you may be entitled to significant financial compensation. For a free, no-obligation case consultation, contact our team of SSRI birth defect 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.
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