Paxil, Zoloft, and Other SSRIs: What You Need to Know

Injury & Accident Attorneys Serving Oklahoma City, Edmond, Norman & all of Oklahoma

Posted: May 1, 2015
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Oklahoma drug lawyerSelective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are a popular type of antidepressant. They work by increasing levels of a mood-enhancing chemical called serotonin. Serotonin is our brain’s “pleasure” chemical and gets released when we have sex or soak in natural sunlight.

Unfortunately, SSRIs don’t always work as promised. In recent years, SSRIs like Paxil and Zoloft have faced hundreds of lawsuits regarding unintended side effects.

Zoloft and Paxil, for example, have both been accused of increasing the risk of birth defects in pregnant women.

Have you been affected by unwanted side effects of Paxil and Zoloft? Find out everything you need to know about these two controversial pharmaceuticals and their impending lawsuits.

Zoloft Lawsuits:

Lawsuits across America have accused pharmaceutical company Pfizer of actively advertising Zoloft to pregnant women in spite of the fact that they knew it could cause birth defects.

Zoloft was introduced way back in 1991. It quickly became one of America’s most frequently-prescribed antidepressants. The distinctive bouncing ball ads were a huge hit and millions of people across the United States began taking Zoloft to treat their depression.

Over the past few years, however, there’s been growing evidence that Zoloft can cause birth defects. A total of 250 Zoloft birth defect lawsuits are working their way through a federal court in Philadelphia. It seems likely that these numbers will continue to grow.

Lawsuits have accused Pfizer of knowingly promoting Zoloft to pregnant women without warning them of the side effects. So far, Zoloft has been linked to a number of serious birth defects, including:

-Holes in the heart

-Cleft palate

-Club feet

-Spina bifida

-Skull defects

-Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn (PPHN)

Children who suffer from these birth defects can die at an early age. At the very least, these children are faced with a life filled with frequent visits to the doctor.

Federal lawsuits against Zoloft have been consolidated in multidistrict litigation (MDL). The lawsuits making their way through the courts in Philadelphia have been primarily filed by parents of children with birth defects.

A separate set of Zoloft cases is making its way through Wayne County Circuit Court in Virginia. These lawsuits have been filed by children who were born with birth defects after their mothers took Zoloft during pregnancy. These children are now adults.

Lawsuits accuse Pfizer of the following counts of negligence:

-Producing, marketing, and selling a dangerous drug

-Failing to warn the public or medical professionals that Zoloft causes birth defects

-Failing to disclose the full results of Zoloft studies and clinical trials

-Failing to conduct post-marketing safety surveillance and report information to the medical community

-Misrepresenting Zoloft as being safe for pregnant women to use

-Promoting and marketing the drug to pregnant women despite studies showing that it caused birth defects

-Failure to act responsibly and in the best interest of the general public

If you or a loved one took Zoloft during pregnancy and gave birth to a child with a birth defect, then you may be eligible to receive compensation from Pfizer.

Paxil Lawsuits:

Paxil was approved by the FDA in 1992. It works in a similar way to Zoloft by suppressing serotonin reuptake to treat depression.

Over the past few years, Paxil has been linked to a number of undisclosed side effects. Like Zoloft, Paxil was found to lead to an increased risk of birth defects when taken by pregnant women.

Researchers have also noticed an increased risk of suicide among children and adolescents taking Paxil.

The drug’s manufacturer, GlaxoSmithKline, is accused of hiding information about Paxil – like the possibility of an increased risk of suicide or birth defects.

Back in 2005, the FDA issued an advisory about Paxil and warned pregnant women not to take the drug. The drug was accused of leading to an increased risk of all of the following conditions in newborn children:

-Atrial Septal Defects (ASD)

-Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn (PPHN)

-Omphalocele (abdominal defects)

-Respiratory distress

-Ventricular Septal Defects (VSD)

Some of these birth defects are life threatening. Children will be forced to spend much of their young lives going in and out of doctors’ offices.

Lawsuits against GlaxoSmithKline claim that the company hid evidence starting in the 1980s showing Paxil was linked with birth defects. The company reportedly disregarded these claims and pushed the product to market in 1992 without fully disclosing to the FDA or the general public about its known risks.

Paxil lawsuits have already made their way through the courts. In 2009, a Philadelphia jury awarded $2.5 million to a three-year old and his family as compensation for birth defects caused by Paxil. That three-year old boy was born with two holes in the heart. These holes were thought to be caused by Paxil.

How to Seek Compensation for Damages:

Paxil and Zoloft compensation can be used to cover medical bills, lost wages, ongoing care costs, and pain and suffering experienced by the family.

Families with children who were born with birth defects face a difficult journey. Children may spend their entire lives going in and out of hospital rooms and doctors’ offices. Families may be forced to take time off work.

Looking for a pharmaceutical drug lawyer in Oklahoma City that’s eager to take on the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies?

Johnson & Biscone specializes in pharmaceutical law. This Oklahoma City law firm has the knowledge and experience needed to secure top compensation for clients. If you or a loved one has been affected by Paxil, Zoloft, or other SSRIs, then call Johnson & Biscone today at 1-800-426-4563 for a free consultation.

You can also download our FREE eBook discussing dangerous drugs, side effects and what you can do to get help.

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