Can a common anti-nausea drug cause serious injury?

As most Texas women who have given birth can likely attest, pregnancy can be a difficult and draining experience. Particularly during a pregnant woman's first trimester, morning sickness and the accompanying nausea can be severe. Some women may take medication for this condition in order to keep it under control and go about their daily lives. However, some medications may carry the threat of adverse effects on developing fetuses.

Studies now show that one popular anti-nausea medication may actually put unborn babies at risk for birth defects. The drug, Zofran, is known generically as ondansetron. The drug blocks the action of serotonin and is described as a 5-HT3 receptor antagonist. A study out of Boston University and Harvard demonstrates that exposure to Zofran or its generic equivalent can put women at risk for delivering a child with a cleft palate. In particular, the study found that women exposed to Zofran or ondansetron were over twice as likely to deliver a child with this condition.

Researchers from Sweden have also found that Zofran may cause serious injury when combined with pregnancy. The European researchers reviewed records from 1998 through 2012 and found that women who used Zofran during the early part of their pregnancy were over 60 percent more likely to have a child with a cardiovascular defect.

Birth defects and birth injuries may be the product of negligence and irresponsibility. Physicians, hospitals, pharmacists and drug companies all have specific responsibilities that relate to the safety and health of pregnant women. If a child's health problem is the result of another's negligence, the family may be entitled to compensation for injuries. A Houston medical malpractice attorney can help local families understand and initiate their birth injury case.

Source: The National Law Review, "Zofran studies link medication to serious health risks," June 9, 2015

Categories: Birth Injuries