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Antidepressants & Birth Defects
A study done at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center in September 2007, researchers found that out of 500,000 pregnant woman, fifty percent were unaware that the drugs they were taking put their baby at risk for birth defects.
SSRI Antidepressants such as Zoloft, Paxil, Celexa, and Lexapro have been linked to cases of serious congenital birth defects and many of the mothers taking the drug received inadequate warning during their pregnancy.
SSRI antidepressants have been linked to birth defects such as cardiac defects, persistent pulmonary hypertension in newborns (PPHN) neural tube defects, craniosynostosis, anal atresia, cleft lip, cleft palate, and limb malformations. Researchers have found that pregnant women who took an SSRI after the 20th week of conception were six times more likely to give birth to a baby with PPHN. A 2008 study found a strong association between the drug Paxil and heart defects.
In March 2011, the FDA issued a warning that pregnant women who took the epilepsy and migraine drug, Topamax, were at a higher risk of giving birth to a baby with a cleft palate or cleft lip. In addition, the FDA upgraded Topamax from a Pregnancy Category C drug to a Pregnancy Category D, meaning that there is clear evidence of the risk of birth defects to human fetus.
In addition to these risks, pregnant women who take the drug Topamax are also more likely to give birth to a baby with heart defects, limb malformations, craniofacial defects, and persistent pulmonary hypertension in newborns. (PPHN)