Feldman & Pinto’s Philadelphia Birth Defect Attorneys / Lawyers handle cases involving birth defects caused by defective drugs. A large number of medications can cause birth defects in a child when used by the mother during pregnancy. The companies that manufacture these dangerous drugs can be liable for the child’s birth defect damages.

Birth defects are abnormalities in structure (body parts) or physiology (the way body parts function) that a child is born with. Birth defects can occur during any stage of a fetus’s development, but most occur during the first three months of pregnancy. Adequate prenatal care and the avoidance of certain medications during every stage of pregnancy are crucial to preventing many types of birth defects.

Birth Defects Caused by Defective Drugs

Our Philadelphia Birth Defect Attorneys / Lawyers offer representation to clients who sustained birth defects due to defective drugs. Teratogenic drugs (drugs that cause birth defects) often affect a baby’s:

  • heart
  • face, lips, and mouth
  • spine


Cleft Lip and Cleft Palate birth defects (also known as cleft defects or oro-facial cleft defects) are among the most common birth defects in the United States. These birth defects occur when the lips or mouth tissues fail to properly join together in the early months of pregnancy.

Cleft birth defects can result from use of a number of defective drugs during pregnancy, including:

  • Topamax
  • Depakote
  • Paxil
  • Zoloft
  • Wellbutrin
  • Prozac
  • Lexapro
  • Effexor
  • Symbyax
  • Celexa
  • Cymbalta

topomaxPhiladelphia Birth Defect Attorneys / Lawyers frequently represent clients with cleft defects caused by Topamax. Topamax is an anti-seizure drug that doctors often prescribe for epilepsy and other conditions. The FDA has warned that babies of mothers who use Topamax while pregnant are 21 times more likely than others to be born with a cleft birth defect. See Philadelphia Topamax Drug Injury Lawyers for additional information about Topamax side effects and Topamax law suits.

depakoteDepakote is another anti-seizure medication that can cause cleft birth defects when used during pregnancy. In 2009, the FDA required specific warnings about the risk of cleft birth defects from Depakote. See Philadelphia Depakote Drug Injury Lawyers for more information about Depakote risks and Depakote drug injury lawsuits.

Heart Birth Defects

Heart birth defects (also known as congenital heart defects) are the most common type of birth defect. Heart birth defects can also result from a mother’s use of certain defective drugs during her pregnancy, including:

  • Depakote
  • Depakene
  • Lithium
  • Claravis
  • Amnesteem
  • Thalomid

Depakote can cause serious heart birth defects (congenital heart defects), including:

  • aortic stenosis (narrowing of the aortic valve opening)
  • Tetralogy of Fallot (a combination of four related heart defects)
  • ventricular septal defect (a hole in the heart)

In 2009, the FDA required specific warnings about heart defects caused by Depakote.

Spina bifeda is a specific type of neural tube defect (NTD) that often occurs in babies of mothers who used certain defective drugs (medications) during pregnancy. These drugs can interfere with the development of a fetus’s spine, leaving the spinal cord and nerves vulnerable to serious damage. Spina bifeda / neural tube defects can result from use of many defective pharmaceuticals, including:

  • Depakote
  • Topamax
  • Valproate
  • Paxil
  • Wellbutrin
  • Zoloft
  • Lexapro

In addition to the Depakote warnings noted above, the FDA also required specific warnings about the risks of neural tube defects (spina bifeda) from use of Depakote during pregnancy.

Use of the drug Topamax during pregnancy has also been linked to an increased risk of spina bifeda / neural tube birth defects. Topamax is an anti-seizure medication that doctors also frequently prescribe off-label for migraine headaches, bipolar disorder, and other conditions.

See Philadelphia Topamax Drug Injury Lawyers for more information about Topamax risks / side effects and Topamax lawsuits.

The rheumatoid arthritis (RA) drug Arava has been linked to serious birth defects and fetal death. The FDA designates Arava as a Category X drug that is contraindicated (should not be used) during pregnancy. Consumers are warned:

  • not to take Arava while pregnant
  • to use birth control while taking Arava (this warning is for men and women)
  • to immediately stop taking Arava and contact your doctor if you learn you are pregnant

If a woman becomes pregnant while using Arava, her doctor can prescribe medications to more quickly eliminate Arava from her body. This may help to reduce the risk of Arava birth defects to the fetus.

See Philadelphia Arava Drug Injury Lawyers for more information about the dangerous side effects of Arava and Arava lawsuits.

Crestor is a statin medication prescribed to lower high cholesterol. Crestor has been linked to birth defects in babies of mothers who take Crestor while pregnant. Crestor is a Category X drug, the designation assigned by the FDA for drugs that evidence strongly suggests:

  • can cause birth defects if used during pregnancy, and
  • should not be used by women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant

See Philadelphia Crestor Drug Injury Lawyers for more information about Crestor risks / side effects and Crestor law suits.

Contact a Philadelphia Birth Defect Attorney

If your child was born with a birth defect due to a defective drug used during pregnancy, our Philadelphia Birth Defect Attorneys / Lawyers may be able to help you obtain compensation for your child. Contact us today to schedule a free evaluation of your case.