Zoloft Birth Defects Lawyer

Zoloft Birth Defects Lawyer

Zoloft is an antidepressant drug marketed by the pharmaceutical giant Pfizer that has been linked to a number of serious side effects, including severe birth defects. In 1999, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Zoloft for use in the United States. By 2005, Zoloft was the most popularly prescribed antidepressant on the U.S. market, with nearly 30 million prescriptions being written. In that same year, it was the sixth most prescribed brand-name prescription medication, grossing nearly $2.6 billion.

Zoloft is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant drug. SSRIs work by controlling the brain’s level of serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter thought to affect mood, sleep and learning. Zoloft targets serotonin with the intent to correct a chemical imbalance, therefore improving patient symptoms. Zoloft is used in the treatment of many disorders, including:

  • Major depressive disorders (MDD)

  • Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)

  • Premenstrual dysphonic disorder (PMDD)

  • Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

  • Panic disorder

  • Social anxiety disorders

The FDA uses “pregnancy categories” to communicate whether or not a drug is safe to take during pregnancy. Zoloft is in category “C,” which means that animal studies have shown some harm to the fetus, but there have not been adequate studies in humans. Research shows, however, that babies born to mothers who have taken Zoloft or another SSRI after the 20th week of pregnancy are more likely to suffer from persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn (PPHN), which is fatal in 10 percent of cases.

In addition, recent studies in the New England Journal of Medicine, First-Trimester Use of Selective Serotonin-Reuptake Inhibitors and the Risk of Birth Defects, have shown that women who take Zoloft during the first three months of pregnancy are more likely to give birth to babies with birth defects, as compared to women who do not take any antidepressants during pregnancy. These Zoloft birth defects can be life-threatening and may include the following:

  • Congenital Heart Defects such as Atrial Septal Defects or Ventricular Septal Defects

  • Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn (PPHN);

  • Abdominal Defects including a condition called omphalocele in which the intestines and organs stick out through the belly button

  • Skull defects called Craniosynostosis, a congenital defect that causes one or more sutures on a baby’s head to close earlier than normal. Sutures are connections that separate each individual skull bones; the early closing of a suture leads to an abnormally shaped head.

  • Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

Many parents of children born with birth defects feel that Pfizer did not adequately warn them about the potential side effects of using Zoloft and have filed lawsuits against the drug manufacturer. Pfizer is currently facing over one thousand Zoloft birth defects lawsuits. If you need a Zoloft birth defects lawyer, Tate Law Group will get you the financial compensation you need to pay the expensive medical bills that can come with congenital birth defects.

A recently released Pfizer Inc. report shows that a scientist actually warned Pfizer executives last year about a potential link between Zoloft and birth defects and recommended changes to the medication’s safety warning. The fact that they knew about these potential birth defects caused by their drug – all of which is detailed in the document from a Pfizer drug-safety official – could complicate the company’s efforts to fend off lawsuits brought by parents of children with birth defects. Pfizer has consistently rejected suggestions Zoloft caused newborn abnormalities and said in June of this year that the document was taken out of context by lawyers suing the company.

If you or someone you know was prescribed Zoloft and your child has suffered any of these side effects, please call Tate Law Group today – your Zoloft birth defects lawyer – toll-free at (866) 610-7107 (or) contact us online.