Update: GSK Must Face Paxil Lawsuits in Illinois
August 30, 2016 – GSK will need to face legal action in Cook County, Illinois, over claims Paxil caused birth defects, according to the Cook County Record. The decision came after an appeals court ruled local state courts have jurisdiction to preside over the cases – even complaints filed on behalf of plaintiffs who have no connection to Illinois.
What is Paxil?
The orally-administered antidepressant medication Paxil is used to treat major depressive disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder. It is a potent and highly selective member of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) class of antidepressants. It is one of the oldest SSRIs, on the market since 1992.
Paxil Side Effects
- Birth defects
- Sexual dysfunction
- Allergic reactions
- Racing or abnormal heart rate
- Suicidal thoughts or behavior
- And more
Paxil and Pregnancy
Paxil is classified as a Pregnancy Category D drug, which means that studies in humans have demonstrated a possible risk to a developing baby, but doctors may still prescribe Paxil to a pregnant woman if the benefit outweighs the risk.
FDA Safety Warning for Paxil Birth Defects
In 2005, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) published a Safety Communication to warn pregnant women about the increased risk of birth defects from Paxil. The FDA was particularly concerned about two studies — one linking Paxil to a 4% risk of birth defects, and another study linking Paxil to a doubled risk of heart defects.
Paxil Heart Defects
Studies have linked Paxil to a significantly higher risk of heart defects, particularly “hole in the heart” defects, such as atrial septal defect and ventricular septal defect. These life-threatening congenital defects occur when there is a hole in the wall separating chambers on the left and right side of the heart. Approximately 2% of babies exposed to Paxil are born with a heart defect, versus 1% of non-exposed babies.
Hundreds of people have already filed Paxil lawsuits and received settlements. The first lawsuit to go to trial, Kilker v. GlaxoSmithKline, was filed on behalf of Lyam Kilker, a child who was exposed to Paxil in the womb and was born with severe heart defects. In October 2009, a jury in Philadelphia awarded his family $2.5 million. Less than a year later, GlaxoSmithKline agreed to pay more than $1 billion to settle approximately 800 Paxil lawsuits for an average payment of $1.2 million.
Paxil Class Action Lawsuit Settlement
GlaxoSmithKline settled a Paxil class action lawsuit in California in February 2012. The $8.5 million settlement resolved allegations that the drug-maker violated the law by failing to warn doctors that Paxil could be addictive and have severe withdrawal symptoms.
Paxil Birth Defects
- Heart defects
- Atrial Septal Defect
- Ventricular Septal Defect (VSD)
- Tetralogy of Fallot
- Transposition of the Great Arteries
- Truncus Arteriosus
- Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension of the Newborn (PPHN)
- Neural tube defects
- Spina bifida
- Pulmonary Atresia
- Diaphragmatic Hernia
- Neonatal withdrawal syndrome
- And more
Paxil Heart Defects Lawsuit Dismissed Over Lack of Evidence
May 2, 2016 – A Philadelphia judge has dismissed the first Paxil birth defects lawsuit to go to trial after determining that evidence presented by the plaintiff was insufficient to proceed. The complaint was filed by Braden Rader, who was allegedly born with a congenital heart defect called tetralogy of fallot after his mother took Paxil during pregnancy. Judge Kenneth J. Powell Jr. dismissed the case on April 5 due to a lack of evidence to support their claims.
“Based on the testimony presented by the plaintiff, all the jury could do is guess. I cannot permit the jury to speculate,” Powell said.
Paxil Linked to Heart, Brain, Abdominal Wall Defects: BMJ Study
A study published in The BMJ on July 8, 2015 identified a link between Paxil and birth defects of the heart, brain, skull and abdominal wall. In women who took either Paxil or Prozac early in pregnancy, birth defects occurred 2 to 3.5 more frequently compared with women who did not take them. Click here to learn more.
Do I have a Paxil Class Action Lawsuit?
The Product Liability & Defective Drug Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in Paxil lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.
Free Confidential Case Evaluation: Again, if you or a loved one had a baby with a birth defect caused by Paxil, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by joining a Paxil class action or by filing a Paxil lawsuit, and we can help.