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Dangerous Drugs?: Prenatal Pain Medication Linked to Rare Birth Defects

December 31, 1969

According to investigators, using nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs while pregnant can increase the risk for birth defects. While researchers were careful to specify that the risk factor isn't major, it is still "small-to-moderate." The work from this investigation can be found in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology's March issue.

The data used came from the National Birth Defects Prevention Study of birth defect risk factors. 3173 women received NSAIDs while another 1452 were taking the medications as needed. These women were a representation of 23% of those who took NSAIDs during their first trimester of pregnancy. While most of the 29 birth defect groups examined did not appear to be linked with ant-inflammatory medication, there were several that did exhibit a connection to elevated risks. Aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen were among the pain medications that appeared to create a risk of birth defects, such as neural tubal defects, oral clefts, pulmonary valve stenosis, anophthalmia, amniotic band syndrome, microphthalmia, transverse limb deficiencies, or limb body wall defects.

"It is important to know if any type of drug can prove dangerous for the mother and/or fetus during pregnancy," said Howard Law, PC Founder and Anaheim dangerous drug attorney Vincent Howard. "Drug manufacturers must provide warnings of such risks or it is the child that ends up suffering for a birth defect that could have easily been prevented."

Last year, our Orange County, California products liability law firm published a blog about SSRI antidepressants and how they too can increase the risk of birth defects. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors include drugs such as Prozac, Zoloft, Cymbalta, Symbyax, Effexor, Celexa, and Paxil. A number of studies have reported that there are babies whose moms took the medications while pregnant who ended up with health issues involving the heart, liver, kidneys, brain, or stomach. There was even one study associated with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that reported there were babies from mothers who took SSRI antidepressants while pregnant who were born without a forebrain, with organs outside the body, or certain skull complications. There was also a CDC study from last year that linked birth defects, including hypoplastic left heart syndrome, to opioid use prior to or during early pregnancy.

"Living with a birth defect can result in costly medical expenses and emotional trauma for a child and his family," said Anaheim personal injury lawyer Vincent Howard. "You may be able to hold the drug maker liable."

Rare Birth Defects Linked to Prenatal Pain Medication Use, Medscape, March 23, 2012

Nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug use among women and the risk of birth defects, US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health, March 12, 2012

More Blog Posts:
Dangerous Drug Lawsuit Seeks Blames Children's Tylenol for Toddler's Death, California Injury Lawyers, January 6, 2012

Yasmin/Yaz Birth Control Pills: FDA Advisory Panel Advises Including Blood Clot Warning on Their Labels, California Injury Lawyers, December 31, 2011

$48.1M Los Angeles Products Liability Verdict Awarded to Man That Took Motrin and Developed SJS and TEN, California Injury Lawyers, October 7, 2011

Contact Orange County, California child injury lawyer Vincent Howard today. We represent children and adults who were injured because other parties were negligent. Your first consultation with our Anaheim dangerous drug law firm is free.