Important Birth Defect Information: The antidepressant Lexapro®(escitalopram) may increase the risk for birth defects in babies that are exposed to the antidepressant during fetal development.
Lexapro® is a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant that is manufactured and sold by Forest Laboratories, Inc. It is FDA-approved for the treatment of major depressive disorder and for generalized anxiety disorder in adults and children over 12 years old.
Types of Birth Defects Linked to Lexapro®
It has been reported that Lexapro® and other SSRI antidepressants can cause a multitude of birth defects, including (but not limited to):
- Cardiac problems (such as septal defects — holes in the heart)
- Pulmonary (lung) problems such as PPHN (persistent pulmonary hypertension of the newborn)
- Abdominal malformations (e.g., omphalocele)
- Malformations of the cranium (skull); e.g., craniosynostosis
Lexapro® and Autism
The major healthcare system Kaiser Permanente published a study in mid-2011 revealing that the children of women who were treated with Lexapro® or a similar SSRI during their pregnancies are twice as likely to be diagnosed with autismcompared to women who did not take such medications during their pregnancies.
Autism is a spectrum of related disorders. Symptoms of autism appear in infancy and early childhood. They vary in severity, but most children with autism have problems communicating verbally and non-verbally, relating to others and behaving properly.
Dangerously High Blood Pressure in Pregnant Women
Lexapro® can also cause “pregnancy defects.” For example, in early 2012, another study showed that Lexapro® treatment during a woman’s pregnancy can give her dangerously high blood pressure (hypertension), which can harm both the mother and her child.
Don’t Delay! Call Clay!
If your child was born with a birth defect and you were taking Lexapro® while you were pregnant, it’s a good idea to speak with a knowledgeable lawyer to discuss your concerns and your child’s future. Don’t delay! Call Clay! Our initial consultation is FREE! Our experienced staff members are here to help.