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ACE Inhibitors

ACE Inhibitors Side Effects May Link To Birth Defects Lawsuits

Ace Inhibitors | Lawsuits, Lawyers | Side Effects; Constricting Blood Vessels, Enzyme Inhibitors, ACE Inhibitors Harmful Side Effects

ACE inhibitors (angiotensin-converting enzyme) are used for monitoring blood pressure, treating heart failure and preventing kidney damage in people with hypertension or diabetes. ACE inhibitors have been on the market for 25 years, and work by relaxing blood vessels and increasing blood flow to the heart. Sales of ACE inhibitors last year in the United States topped $3.8 billion, with about 150 million prescriptions filled, according to IMS Health, a pharmaceutical information company. The top-selling ACE Inhibitors include Lotrel, Altace and Lisinopril.

New Data On June 7, 2006 results from a new study determined that children whose mothers took ACE inhibitors within their first trimester were more than twice as likely to be born with severe brain and heart ailments, as compared to those not exposed to any blood pressure-lowering medicines. The latest statistics from a national survey found the number of ACE inhibitor prescriptions given to childbearing women enlarged from 1.4 million in 1995 to 2.7 million in 2002. In the report, researchers examined Medicaid records on 29,507 Tennessee infants born between 1985 and 2000. Out of the 29,507, 411 babies had mothers, who took a blood pressure drug at least once during their first trimester.

FDA Warnings ACE inhibitors currently bear a strong FDA black box warning about their dangers in the later stages of pregnancy. ACE Inhibitors labels also state that the drugs should be stopped upon pregnancy. Hardly any research or data to date is available regarding the side effects of ACE Inhibitors within the first trimester of pregnancy. After this study was released, the FDA said more research is needed before it considers changing the warning label to specifically include the risks during the first trimester.

During the 1990s, the FDA made it mandatory for pharmaceutical companies to put warning stickers on ACE inhibitors after the agency received a few reports from women whose babies were harmed. The label warned that ACE inhibitors could cause skull deformities, kidney failure, lung problems and even fetal death when taken in the last two-thirds of pregnancy.

Based on the new findings, taking these drugs during early pregnancy "cannot be considered safe and should be avoided," lead researcher Dr. William Cooper, a Vanderbilt University pediatrician, said in Thursday's New England Journal of Medicine.

Statistics Birth Defects

The study was able to determine that approximately 7% of babies exposed to ACE inhibitors developed major birth defects compared with about 2% whose mothers took no drugs or other blood pressure medication, such as water pills, calcium channel blockers or beta-blockers. Holes in the heart and neurological and kidney problems are the most common birth defects.

Other ACE Inhibitors Capoten (generic: captopril), Lotensin (generic: benazepril), Vasotec (generic: enlapril), Aceon (generic: perindopril), Accupril (generic: quinapril), Univasc (generic: moexipril), Mavik (genric: trandolapril), Monapril (generic: fosinopril)

Legal help for ACE Inhibitors users

If you or a loved one took ACE Inhibitors while pregnant and your baby was born with a birth defect, contact Parker & Waichman, LLP for a free and confidential consultation about your potential case. Call 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529) or fill out the short form to the right


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Health Canada reminds women not to use ACE inhibitors during pregnancy

Jun 29, 2006 | Health Canada
Health Canada is advising women not to use blood pressure medication known as ACE (angiotensin-converting enzyme) inhibitors during pregnancy due to the risk of birth defects. These drugs are used alone or with other medicines to treat high blood pressure in adults. A recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine suggests that ACE inhibitors may be associated with increased risk of birth defects when used in the first three months of pregnancy. There are many Health Canada-approved...

Blood Pressure Drugs Linked To Birth Defects

Jun 20, 2006 |
ACE inhibitors, drugs commonly used to treat high blood pressure, have been linked to birth defects if taken by the expectant mother during the first trimester of her pregnancy, according to a new study carried out by researchers at Vanderbilt University and Boston University. Researchers gathered data from the medical records of 29,507 newborns. 209 of their mothers had taken ACE inhibitors during the first trimester of pregnancy. 18 of them were born with birth defects, of which 9 had heart...

Medication risky in first trimester, study shows

Jun 8, 2006 | Washington Post
A popular class of blood pressure medicines thought to be safe in the first trimester of pregnancy appears to cause serious birth defects in about 7 percent of babies whose mothers took them, a new study has found. ACE inhibitors already carry a warning that pregnant women should not use them in the last two trimesters because they can cause kidney damage to the fetus. The number of women taking them early in pregnancy is unknown but probably small, the study suggests. ACE inhibitors are the...

Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitor (ACE inhibitor) Drugs and Pregnancy

Jun 8, 2006 |
On June 8, 2006, the New England Journal of Medicine published an article reporting that infants whose mothers had taken an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACE inhibitors) drug during the first trimester of pregnancy had an increased risk of major congenital malformations, compared with infants who had not undergone first trimester exposure to ACE inhibitor drugs. The number of cases of birth defects is small and the findings of this study have not yet been repeated (see below for more...

ACE inhibitors linked to birth defects

Jun 7, 2006 | AP
Some blood pressure drugs previously thought to be safe when taken early in pregnancy now appear to substantially raise the risk of major birth defects, doctors say. Babies whose mothers took ACE inhibitors in their first trimester were more than twice as likely to be born with serious heart and brain problems than those not exposed to any pressure-lowering medicines, a large study in Tennessee found. Other types of blood pressure drugs did not raise the risk to babies. The research raises...

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