Nineteen cases were filed against Pfizer, the pharmaceutical company that manufactures Zoloft, after mothers claim the drug caused birth defects in their children. While pregnant, the mothers took Zoloft as prescribed by their doctors. As a result, they claim, their children suffered from permanent congenital defects such as holes in the heart or persistent pulmonary hypertension, craniofacial defects and other malformations. Pfizer knew or should have known that ingestion of Zoloft during pregnancy causes birth defects, according to the suits.
When taken by pregnant women, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) like Zoloft are known to cause a variety of complications in newborns. The drugs, which are used to treat depression and anxiety, change the balance of serotonin in the brain, which boosts good moods. However, studies have shown that SSRIs increase the risk of major congenital malformation in infants. It is therefore vital that drug manufacturers provide detailed explanations of the potential serious complications associated with these drugs.
Greg Spizer is a partner of Anapol Weiss and co-chairs the firm's Mass Tort Department. He concentrates his practice on pharmaceutical liability, professional malpractice, products liability and other civil and commercial litigation.