Alcohol and illegal drugs are known to cause birth defects. However, what is less well-known is that even some prescription drugs can contribute to birth defects in an unborn fetus. If a doctor prescribed a medication that is known to cause birth defects or if he or she failed to take you off of an already-prescribed medication, he or she might be guilty of medical malpractice.
Effects That Prescriptions Can Have on a Fetus
Physicians have a duty of care to prescribe medications that will not place the health of the mother or the fetus at risk. For example, SSRI medications that are prescribed to treat anxiety and depression can increase the risk that the infant will develop persistent pulmonary hypertension. Other birth defects that result from SSRIs include:
Your doctor would be responsible for helping you search for an alternative to your SSRI. There are various other types of drugs that can lead to birth defects, such as fertility drugs, antibiotics, drugs for nausea, drugs for acid reflux, anti-seizure medications, and anti-inflammatory drugs.
Seeking Compensation for a Birth Defect Injury
The physical and emotional effects that birth defects can have on a child can be traumatic for both the child and his or her parents. The cost of taking care of a child who is suffering from birth defects can be very high and may require that one or both parents take time off from work. Because of the monetary damages you might face as a result of birth defects, you deserve compensation.
Most states have strict product liability laws. This means that a product manufacturer is responsible for damages caused by his or her products even when reasonable care is taken in the designing, manufacturing, and marketing of the product. However, there are some states where you must prove that the doctor was negligent to be able to receive compensation for your injuries.
Birth Defect Attorneys
A medical malpractice case can be very complex. You will need to understand the health effects that prescribed medication can have on your child, and you'll also need to sort out who was responsible for failing to warn you about the harmful effects of the medication. You may have a claim against the drug manufacturer, physician, or hospital. Making sense of who is responsible requires the help of birth defect attorneys, such as Cooney and Conway.