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Proton Pump Inhibitors Birth Defects

Proton Pump Inhibitors May Lead To Birth Defect Lawsuits

Proton Pump Inhibitors Birth Defects | Lawsuits, Lawyers | Side Effects: Birth defects, Cardiac Birth Defects, Septal Defects of Heart

Where you treated with a proton pump inhibitor during pregnancy, only to give birth to a child with birth defects? Studies have indicated that proton pump inhibitors may increase the risks that an infant will be born with a birth defect, especially septal defects of the heart. If you took any proton pump inhibitor, including Nexium, Dexilant, Prilosec, Zegerid, Prevacid, Protonix, or AcipHex, during pregnancy, and your child was born with a heart birth defect, you may be entitled to compensation.

Lawyers at our firm who specialize in defective drug litigation are offering free consultations to any family who believes their child's birth defect is associated with the use of Nexium, Dexilant, Prilosec, Zegerid, Prevacid, Protonix, or AcipHex during pregnancy. To find out how we can help your family, please contact us today for a no-obligation evaluation of your case.

Proton Pump Inhibitors and Septal Birth Defects

Proton pump inhibitors, available by prescription and over-the-counter (OTC) are approved to treat conditions such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), stomach and small intestine ulcers, and inflammation of the esophagus. Prescription versions of the drugs include Nexium, Dexilant, Prilosec, Zegerid, Prevacid, Protonix, and Aciphex. OTC brands include Prilosec OTC, Zegerid OTC and Prevacid 24HR.

Since their introduction in the 90s, proton pumps have ranked among the top selling drugs, with doctors writing 119 million prescriptions for them in 2009 alone. About half of women experience acid reflux during pregnancy, and physicians are increasingly prescribing proton pump inhibitors to treat them. Yet the safety of the drugs in pregnancy has never been clearly established.

In August 2010, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania published a study which found that use of these drugs during early pregnancy was associated with a doubling in the risk of newborn cardiac birth defects such as septal defects. The University of Pennsylvania's retrospective study looked at births among 200,000 women. The researchers identified 2,445 cases of cardiac malformations in newborns and compared them with 19,530 matched controls. The researchers found 130 instances of a proton pump inhibitor being prescribed within the first trimester in the women who gave birth to infants with cardiac birth defects.

After adjustment for multiple variables including maternal BMI, smoking status, alcohol use, and use of other medications, the risk for cardiac birth defects remained significant. A history of cardiac malformations or diabetes in the mother was associated with a significantly increased risk of a cardiac defect in the baby, according to the study.

Other studies have also pointed to a link between proton pump inhibitors and birth defects. Although a 2010 study from Denmark published in the New England Journal of Medicine suggested that the number of children with birth defects born to women taking proton pump inhibitors was not statistically significant, the study also found that women who took the medications in the four weeks leading up to pregnancy had a 39 percent greater risk of having children with birth defects. The study looked at nearly 841,000 births registered with national databases from 1996 to 2008.

Atrial and Ventrical Septal Birth Defects

According to the March of Dimes, about 35,000 infants (1 out of every 125) are born each year with a heart birth defect. Heart defects are among the most common birth defects and are the leading cause of birth defect-related deaths. It is known that certain medications, especially when taken in the first trimester of pregnancy, can increase the risk that a child will be born with a heart birth defect.

A septal birth defect is a hole in the wall (septum) that divides the right and left sides of the heart. Septal defects can cause the blood to circulate improperly, so the heart has to work harder.

There are two main types of septal defects. An atrial septal defect involves a hole in the wall between the heart’s two upper chambers. Many children with an atrial septal defect have few, if any, symptoms.  Closing the atrial defect by open-heart surgery in childhood can prevent serious problems later in life.

A ventricular septa defect is a hole between the lower chambers of the heart. Some babies with a large ventricular septal defect don't grow normally and may become undernourished.  Babies with a ventricular septal defect may develop severe symptoms or high blood pressure in their lungs.

Some atrial septal defects can be repaired without surgery by inserting a thin, flexible tube into the heart and then releasing a device that plugs the hole. A surgeon also can close an atrial or ventricular septal defect by sewing or patching the hole. Small holes may heal by themselves or not need repair at all.

Legal Help for Victims of Proton Pump Inhibitor Birth Defects

If your child was born with a birth defect, especially a septal defect, and you took a proton pump inhibitor while pregnant, your family may have valuable legal rights. To find out how our proton pump inhibitor lawyers can help you, please fill out our online form, or call 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529) today.


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Side Effects of Popular Heartburn Medications Include Kidney Disease and Dementia

Sep 21, 2016
The American Heart Association, in a study published in the May 2016 issue of Circulation Research, warns of possibly life-threatening side effects of some widely used heartburn medications. Nexium, Prilosec, and other proton pump inhibitors (PPI) medications have been prescribed for stomach acid reduction for nearly 35 years. But studies have shown that these medications can prematurely age vascular cells, Top Class Actions reports. This cell aging could be the reason PPIs have been linked to...

Study Finds PPIs Significantly Increase C. Diff Risk

Jul 11, 2012 | Parker Waichman LLP
Proton pump inhibitor drugs (PPIs) significantly increase the risk of a person developing Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea (CDAD), according to a new study.Researchers at Harper University Hospital in Michigan and University of Utah School of Medicine discovered that people taking PPI drugs like Aciphex, Nexium, Omeprazole, Prevacid, Prilosec, and Protonix, are two-thirds more likely to develop CDAD than those not taking any of these drugs. PPI drugs are among the most commonly...

Proton Pump Inhibitors Signicantly Increase Risk of C-Diff

May 10, 2012 | Parker Waichman LLP
A new comprehensive study of the effects of Proton Pump Inhibitor (PPI) drugs like Nexium, Prevacid, Prilosec, and Protonix has revealed their association with a greater risk of the life-threatening Clostridium difficile infection (C-diff. or CDI). According to a report at, researchers at the European Congress of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases have discovered a “robust association” between the popular and widely-prescribed...

FDA Warns PPIs May Cause Severe Diarrheal Infection

Feb 9, 2012 | Parker Waichman LLP
Patients who take proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) may be at a higher risk of developing a serious condition called Clostridium difficile–associated diarrhea (CDAD).  The danger prompted the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) to issue a Drug Safety Communication yesterday, and announce that it was working with the makers of PPIs to add information about their association with CDAD to the drug's labels.CDAD is a type of diarrhea that does not improved.  It is caused by...

Plavix, Proton Pump Inhibitor Warnings Revised in Canada

Sep 23, 2011 | Parker Waichman LLP
Health Canada is revising the label for Plavix in that country to reflect new information about the concurrent use of the blood thinner and other drugs called proton pump inhibitors (PPIs).   Many Plavix users take PPIs to counteract the ulcers and heartburn that can accompany use of the blood thinner.In 2009, Health Canada updated the labels for ALL PPIs to recommend they not be used with Plavix, after some research indicated that the drugs could reduce the efficacy of Plavix. ...

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