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birth defects 202 articles

Certain antibiotics linked to major birth defects

Babies born to women who use certain types of antibiotics while pregnant may be at an increased risk of major congenital malformations, according to a study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology. Other types of antibiotics, however, were not associated with these types of birth defects. The antibiotics of concern include clindamycin, doxycycline, quinolones, macrolides and phenoxymethylpenicillin. Exposure to amoxicillin, cephalosporins, and nitrofurantion did not show this risk. Researchers from the University of Montreal launched the study to better understand the link between gestational antibiotic exposure and major congenital malformations. Using the Quebec pregnancy cohort consisting of nearly 400,000 ... Read More

One-tenth of Zika-infected moms in U.S. delivered babies with birth defects

One in 10 women in the U.S. with confirmed Zika infection during pregnancy delivered a fetus or baby with a Zika-related complications in 2016, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The statistics are based on the U.S. Zika Pregnancy Registry, which the CDC established last year to better understand the impact the Zika virus has had on developing fetuses in infected pregnant women in the U.S. and U.S. territories. The registry does not include data from Puerto Rico because that country has its own Zika registry. The report identified 972 completed pregnancies from January through December ... Read More

Birth defects in Zika pregnancies 20 times higher than prior to the virus outbreak

Researchers have found more proof of the devastating effects of the Zika virus on developing fetuses. A new report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that pregnant women in the U.S. infected with Zika are 20 times more likely to have babies with certain birth defects compared with the prevalence of those birth defects prior to the Zika epidemic in North America. The study aimed to determine how common certain birth defects were before the Zika outbreak compared to after the outbreak. Researchers focused on defects such as microcephaly, brain abnormalities, eye defects and central ... Read More

CDC releases initial estimate of birth defects following Zika virus infection

Six percent of completed pregnancies in the U.S. following Zika virus infection were affected by at least one birth defect likely related to Zika infection during pregnancy, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports. The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, is based on data from the U.S. Zika Pregnancy Registry (USZPR). The data was collected in collaboration with the CDC and state and local health departments in the continental U.S. and Hawaii to monitor pregnancies with laboratory evidence of Zika virus infection. As of Sept. 22, 2016, 442 women with possible Zika virus ... Read More

Pfizer trying to skirt 15 Zoloft birth defects claims filed in California

Pfizer is taking aim at 15 plaintiffs who filed a lawsuit in California over birth defects claims with the company’s antidepressant Zoloft when used during pregnancy. A total of 18 lawsuits were pulled from California state court into a multidistrict litigation (MDL) in Pennsylvania federal court in October. Pfizer is targeting 15 of them, arguing the plaintiffs are not California residents and that the court does not have jurisdiction over their claims. Pfizer also argued that the court lacked general jurisdiction over Pfizer because the drug company is not organized under California law and does not maintain its principal place ... Read More

French drug authorities accused of withholding info linking seizure med to birth defects

French drug regulators are being accused of concealing a study linking the anti-epilepsy drug Depakine to birth defects. An investigation by the weekly French newspaper Le Canard enchaîné reported that the health ministry withheld the research, which found that the seizure and bipolar medication had been prescribed to more than 10,000 pregnant women from 2007 to 2014 despite knowledge that the drug was unsafe for developing fetuses. The health ministry fired back, saying the study, conducted by national drug agency ANSM and health insurance agency CNAMTS, had been launched just a year ago and that it had plans to present ... Read More

Experts weigh in on lingering effects of Zika infection in infants

Babies born to women who were infected with Zika while pregnant who do not show signs of problems at birth could develop problems months or years later, medical experts warn. The Zika virus has been positively linked to microcephaly, a birth defect in which the infant’s head is too small. It is often associated with neurological problems. But as researchers begin to delve deeper into the mosquito-borne disease, they are finding evidence that problems could linger in babies infected in utero. “Some infants who appear initially normal, but have one of the milder forms of developmental brain problems, tend to ... Read More

More Zofran lawsuits filed as drug marketed off-label for morning sickness is linked to birth defects

The Daily Hornet, reporting on Zofran lawsuits, said that experts say that the 265 suits pending in a centralized federal litigation in Massachusetts will likely be transferred to Boston. This was the count as of June 7, but Massachusetts isn’t the only state where Zofran suits are being filed both in state and federal courts. Lawsuits also are still being brought against drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), so the numbers are rising. One such case reported by the Daily Hornet involves plaintiffs who are the parents of twins, both of whom were born diagnosed with heart defects. One twin died from the severity ... Read More

Anti-seizure drug studied for oral birth defect risk

Babies born to women taking the anti-seizure drug lamotrigine during pregnancy may not be at an increased risk of birth defects such as cleft lip, cleft palate or clubfoot, according to a study published in the journal Neurology. Lamotrigine, known by the brand name Lamictal, is used alone or with other medications to control seizures and prevent mood swings in patients with bipolar disorder. Lamotrigine, along with various other antiepileptic drugs, including Topomax and Depakote, have been associated with birth defects. For example, in 2011, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned that Topamax and its generic versions were associated ... Read More

Birmingham family sues Zofran maker over baby’s heart defect

Jon and Clara Rickman of Birmingham, Ala., are suing the makers of the anti-nausea drug Zofran, claiming the medication was illegally promoted as a morning sickness treatment but pregnant women who took the drug were at greater risk of delivering a newborn with birth defects. The Rickmans’ lawsuit is one of 200 against drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). Their son Nicholas was born with a congenital heart defect after Clara took a generic form of Zofran, known as ondansetron, to help with nausea and vomiting during the first trimester of pregnancy. The Rickmans believe had Clara not taken the medication, their son ... Read More