Omphalocele Birth Defects

Omphalocele Birth Defects

The leading law firm of Alonso Krangle LLP is investigating potential lawsuits on behalf of families whose child may have been born with an omphalocele, an abdominal wall birth defect, because of their mother’s use of a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressant during pregnancy. A growing body of research has linked the use of SSRI antidepressants to birth defects, including omphalocele.

SSRIs that may be associated with the occurrence of an omphalocele include:

  • Celexa
  • Lexapro
  • Paxil
  • Prozac
  • Zoloft

The birth defect lawyers at Alonso Krangle LLP are leaders in defective drug litigation, and understand the difficult road families of children with an omphalocele must travel. If your child’s suffering was caused by an SSRI antidepressant taken during pregnancy, your family deserves compensation from the maker of that drug. Filing a SSRI omphalocele lawsuit could enable you to obtain money damages for your child’s current and future medical needs, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. The birth defect lawyers at Alonso Krangle LLP are currently offering free lawsuit consultations in all 50 states to any family who believes an SSRI caused their baby to suffer an omphalocele. To learn more about obtaining justice for your baby, please contact the SSRI birth defect lawyers at Alonso Krangle LLP today.

What is Omphalocele?

An omphalocele is a birth defect that causes an infant’s abdominal organs to protrude outside of the abdominal cavity through an opening in the belly button area. The size of the herniation can vary from small (containing only a portion of the small intestine) to very large (containing most of the abdominal organs). Approximately 1 in 5,000 babies has an omphalocele that contains bowel only. A “giant omphalocele” is seen in approximately 1 in 10,000 births and occurs when the majority of the liver protrudes into the umbilical cord.

Fetuses with omphalocele are at an increased risk for other birth defects, such as cardiac or neural tube defects, intestinal malrotation and anomalies involving the urinary system. Those with small omphaloceles, which occur in 1 out of 5,000 births, are also at an increased risk for chromosome anomalies, such as trisomy 18.

The exact cause of omphalocele is not known. Some research has indicated that a mother’s use of SSRI antidepressants may be one risk factor for the birth defect. For example, a study published by the New England Journal of Medicine in 2007 found that an omphalocele was present 2.8 times more often in infants whose mothers took SSRIs during pregnancy.

The size of the omphalocele will determine the course of treatment for a baby born with this birth defect. After birth, the exposed organs are returned to the abdominal cavity and the herniation is closed via surgery. During and after surgery, the baby might be on a ventilator for several days to aid breathing.

In the case of a giant omphalocele, a Cesarean delivery is usually warranted to avoid membrane rupture and liver trauma. In some cases, staged surgical repair might be required. During this time, the baby will also be on a ventilator. Surgery to close the abdominal wall defect may be postponed some six to 12 months to allow the abdominal cavity to enlarge as the baby grows.

Learn more about Filing an SSRI Omphalocele Lawsuit

If your child was born with an omphalocele, and you believe an SSRI, including Celexa, Lexapro, Paxil, Prozac, or Zoloft, might be to blame, you may be eligible to file a lawsuit against the manufacturers of these medications. To learn more about the legal options available to you, please contact the SSRI birth defect lawyers at Alonso Krangle LLP by filling out our online form or calling 1-800-403-6191.