It is during the first trimester of pregnancy that a fetus begins to form and develop key organs such as the brain and heart. For this reason, it is extremely important that pregnant women are not exposed to substances during this time period that may inhibit the growth and development of the child being carried in the womb.
Zofran has been linked to congenital birth defects, including injury to brain, when administered as a medication to aid women suffering from severe forms of morning sickness but the failure of its manufacturer to follow the necessary steps required to gain approval for use during pregnancy has been linked to severe congenital birth defects which include brain defects and damage. Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers is pursing brain injury cases following Zofran exposure during pregnancy.
Forms of Brain Defects Linked to Zofran
Defects caused by the use of Zofran have ranged in severity and while some have resulted in medical conditions that are minor and treatable; others have resulted in catastrophic injuries that have affected the quality of living for both children and their families. The more serious conditions and defects that have been linked to Zofran include the following.
- Encephalocele— this condition is the result of a deformity in the neural tube, which connects the brain and the system of nerves leading into the spine. The visual indicators of an encephalocele include grooves down the middle of the skull or in the front of the head but the most telling sign of the condition is the presence of a fluid filled sac at the back of the skull where the head meets the neck. Symptoms include developmental problems, seizures, vision loss, paralysis of one or multiple limbs, ataxia (diminished muscle coordination), neurological disorders and mental retardation.
- Anencephaly— the neural tube is what ultimately develops into the brain itself and anencephaly occurs when entire areas of the brain are found to be undeveloped or missing. Most children born with this condition are considered brain dead within days of birth and if they do survive, they will experience deafness, blindness and the inability to feel sensations such as pain.
- Dandy-Walker Syndrome— a defect in the brain where a large portion of the cerebellum is either missing or not formed properly. This condition may not become apparent until parents notice slow motor development and the gradual enlargement of the child’s skull. Additional symptoms during later stages of childhood include vomiting, irritability, seizures, abnormal breathing and loss of muscle coordination.
- Holoprosencephaly— the failure of the brain to separate into two hemispheres. There are varying degrees of this condition and the symptoms are dependent on the severity of the defect. In more severe cases, these symptoms include deformities in the face that can include the development of only one eye, the lack of or misplacement of the nose or defects in the lip or other facial structures. In some cases, the defects resulting from this condition may result in miscarriage or stillbirth and many children who are born with the condition suffer from some form of mental retardation or neurological disorders.
These are only the most severe birth defects that have been linked to Zofran use and the medication has also been linked to other conditions such as spina bifida and megalencephaly as well as neurological disorders that are the result of brain damage or diminished mental capacity. The emotional and financial toll of caring for children born with brain defects is exorbitant and it is fully within reason to demand accountability when such injuries are the result of greed and negligence.
Contact us today to learn more about your rights as well as the litigation that is currently being filed against the maker of Zofran for its careless marketing of the medication off label in an effort to bypass approval by the FDA. You may be entitled to compensation for the cost of your child’s care as well as for the pain and suffering your family must endure as a result of his or her condition. If we are unable to secure the compensation for you that you deserve, then our services will be free of charge.