Paxil – Cleft Palate

Paxil and Cleft Palate in Newborns Linked

Cleft Palate birth defects have recently been linked by the FDA to the SSRI drug Paxil, manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline. Cleft Palate occurs when the left and right lower plates of the skull do not fuse together properly – or fail to fuse altogether – resulting in a chasm or gap called a “cleft.” The first trimester of pregnancy is crucial to the rapid development of the basic fetal structure, and studies have shown a connection between first trimester Paxil use and Cleft Palate. Cleft Palate is often accompanied by a cleft lip, and can occur on the hard palate, soft palate, or both in newborn babies.

Cleft Palate – Treatment

Untreated, a Cleft Palate causes breathing, speech, and feeding problems, not to mention the social disadvantages created by the cosmetic appearance of a Cleft Palate and lip. Corrective surgery occurs within the first six to nine weeks of the infant’s life, and follow up procedures are typically necessary within the first year. Once the Cleft Palate is repaired, cosmetic surgery is possible to make the Cleft Palate and lip disappear. Though Cleft Palate is somewhat common (about 1 in every 2500 babies are born with a Cleft Palate or lip), mothers who took Paxil during pregnancy should explore filing a law suit for their child’s Cleft Palate with an attorney immediately.

Submucosal Cleft Palate

Submucosal Cleft Palate, a birth defect that deforms the physical appearance and structure of the newborn’s mouth, has been found to be related to use of the antidepressant drug Paxil (generic name “paroxetine”) during the first trimester and throughout pregnancy. The FDA has issued a Class D warning on the drug citing that it negatively affects fetal development at crucial stages, causing defects of the heart, of the intestines, and of the bone structure like Submucosal Cleft Palate defects. Babies with Submucosal Cleft Palate are at risk for inner ear and nasal cavity infections, speech problems, and social/psychological strains unless treatment is sought.

Submucosal Cleft Palate can be repaired, usually with one or more surgeries, and such procedures in modern times have a high success rate. Additional speech therapy is often required once the Submucosal Cleft Palate is physically repaired. Speech therapy for children with Submucosal Cleft Palate can begin as early as one year of age, and most is effective by the age of five. Mothers who gave birth to a child with Submucosal Cleft Palate or other birth defects who also took the drug Paxil during pregnancy should contact an attorney to file a Submucosal Cleft Palate birth defect lawsuit against GlaxoSmithKline, the maker of Paxil.

Patent Ductus Arteriosus

Patent Ductus Arteriosus is a birth defect which prevents the ductus arteriosus from closing shortly after the baby is born. The ductus arteriosus is a blood vessel that bypasses the lungs while the infant is in the womb, allowing the placenta to provide oxygen to the bloodstream. When the baby is born, oxygen enters the child’s lungs and the ductus arteriosus will close within a few days, allowing blood to flow through the lungs to be oxygenated once more. A Patent Ductus Arteriosus is one that remains open after the lungs have filled with air. Patent Ductus Arteriosus creates an irregular blood flow and can in many cases can cause strain on the heart.

Symptoms of Patent Ductus Arteriosus include fast pulse, strong pulse, fatigue, difficulty feeding or nursing, and sweating during feeding. A Patent Ductus Arteriosus may eventually close on its own, and in some cases when the child has other heart defects a Patent Ductus Arteriosus could actually save the child’s life. However, if the child’s Patent Ductus Arteriosus is not closed, later complications like heart failure and heart infection become a serious risk. Treatment can be as simple as administering a medicine to encourage the Patent Ductus Arteriosus to close and as complicated as surgery. While known causes vary, the FDA has linked Paxil use during pregnancy to the occurrence of Patent Ductus Arteriosus in newborns.

Paxil Attorney

A Paxil Attorney at The Stenger Law Firm, LLC can help families of children born with harmful or fatal birth defects caused by Paxil. Contact our Paxil Attorney at our toll free number for a free case evaluation: (888) 665-0077. Please provide as much information as possible about your case. If you do not provide adequate case information, including injuries or damages sustained it may take us longer to process your inquiry.

There is no charge for this Paxil evaluation.