Third Generation DES Associated With Infertility. The lawyers at our firm are offering free lawsuit evaluations to the victims of diethylstilbestrol (DES), a synthetic form of estrogen that was given to millions of pregnant women between 1938-1971.Even today, the women who took DES, as well as their daughters, sons and grandchildren, continue to suffer health consequences because of DES.
By the 1950s, the makers of DES knew the drug did nothing to promote a healthy pregnancy. Yet, because of its great profit potential, DES was allowed to remain on the market, and millions of people were needlessly put at risk. Our DES lawsuit lawyers are committed to making sure the pharmaceutical companies that sold this dangerous drug are held accountable for their greed and negligence.
DES exposure has been linked to a rare form of cancer, fertility problems and other disorders. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with a disorder that could be the result of DES exposure, you may be entitled to compensation. Please contact one of our DES lawsuit lawyers right away to protect your legal rights.
DES History was first manufactured in a laboratory in 1938, and it was the first synthetic estrogen on the market. For decades, it was routinely prescribed to pregnant women in the mistaken belief that it promoted a healthy pregnancy, and prevented miscarriage and premature birth. But it is now known that when given in the first five months of pregnancy, DES interfered with a baby’s development, affecting its reproductive, immune and skeletal systems.
As early 1953, published research showed that DES did not prevent miscarriages or premature births.
But DES use was widespread until 1971, when the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a Drug Bulletin advising physicians to stop prescribing DES to pregnant women. The FDA warning was based on a study published in 1971 that identified DES as a cause of a rare vaginal cancer called clear cell adenocarcinoma in girls and young women who had been exposed to DES before birth.
Following the publication of the FDA Drug Bulletin in 1971, a nationwide campaign was initiated to find women prescribed DES while pregnant and notify them of potential DES-related health problems. These women were then encouraged to have their DES-exposed daughters screened regularly by a gynecologist because clear cell adenocarcinoma was found in girls as young as 8 years old. These young girls became known as DES Daughters
The women located in the 1970s and their families also became the core of a large study on the health consequences of DES exposure. Ultimately, DES was linked to myriad health problems. an>We now know that all DES-exposed persons are at an increased risk for developing some health problems when compared with persons who were not exposed to DES. Even now, more than three decades after the FDA issued its DES warning, all of the health consequences of DES exposure are not known.
According to the National Cancer Institute, 16% of women prescribed DES during pregnancy developed breast cancer, in comparison with 13% of women not prescribed DES. Therefore, it is estimated that one in six women who were prescribed DES will develop breast cancer, whereas one in eight women in the general population will develop the disease.
DES Daughters face some of the most serious consequences of DES exposure. Approximately one of every 1,000 women exposed to DES before birth will be diagnosed with clear cell adenocarcinoma of the vagina and/or the cervix. Under normal circumstances, this cancer usually only occurs in women past childbearing age. In contrast, DES Daughters have been diagnosed with clear cell adenocarcinoma of the vagina and cervix at as early as age 8 and up to their late teens and early 20s.
Some studies have shown that up to one third of DES Daughters have had some form of reproductive tract abnormality of the cervix, uterus, or fallopian tubes, including vaginal adenosis or cervical changes.
Daughters are at an increased risk of reproductive problems, including complications during pregnancy, such as ectopic pregnancy, premature delivery and miscarriage. DES daughters are also more likely to suffer from infertility.
DES Sons have an increased risk for non-cancerous epididymal cysts, which are growths on the testicles. Studies have also indicated that DES Sons experience a greater likelihood of being born with undescended testicles (cryptorchidism), a misplaced opening of the penis (hypospadias), or a smaller than normal penis (microphallus).
Third Generation DES Victims
Researchers are currently examining the effects of DES exposure on the grandchildren of women prescribed DES while pregnant. That’s because third-generation children (the offspring of DES Daughters and Sons) are just beginning to reach the age when relevant health problems (such as reproductive tract problems), can be studied.
In laboratory animal studies of elderly third-generation DES-exposed, female mice, an increased risk of uterine cancers, benign ovarian tumors, and lymphomas was found. Elderly third-generation DES-exposed male mice were at an increased risk of certain reproductive tract tumors. Both the female and male mice studied were the offspring of female mice exposed to DES before birth. Early research at the Netherlands Cancer Institute on DES Grandsons reported that hypospadias, a misplaced opening of the penis, occurred 20 times more frequently among sons of DES Daughters.