Topiramate, commonly known by its prescribed name, Topamax is a anticonvulsant (antiepilepsy) drug that is used in conjunction with Phentermine for weight loss. Other uses for Topamax include treatment of epilepsy, and for preventing migraine headaches. While Topomax provides relief for the aforementioned conditions, recent studies have shown that birth defects may occur if a pregnant woman is using the medication.
Risks Associated With Topamax While Pregnant
Research performed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate that pregnant women are at risk for and women that are pregnant can have serious side effects while taking Topamax. Among the most common side effects are fatigue, paresthesia (tingling in the extremities), nausea, and depression. Other side effects include diarrhea, a loss of appetite, weight loss. Recent studies have shown that Topamax may also cause acute myopia, and various issues with the eyes, including angle closure glaucoma.
Risks Associated With Topamax And Infants
Studies have been done regarding SSRIs and pregnancy show that infants are at risk of several birth defects if mothers take Topamax during pregnancy. The studies conclude that Topamax is potentially toxic to a baby in utero; the potential for developing a cleft lip and/or cleft palate is unusually high. A recent neurology study has concluded that Topamax taken during pregnancy places infants at birth defects risks 16 times higher than the average risks. The most common health risks and birth defects include:
-Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension Of The Newborn (PPHN)
-Various Heart Defects
-Neural Tube Defects
Topamax and Breastfeeding Warnings
Studies have also shown that taking Topamax while breastfeeding may have adverse effects on the newborn baby. Topamax can be transferred to the baby by breastfeeding, and although the amount of the drug is much less when compared to infant exposure in utero, babies who breastfeed are at risk for:
- Poor feeding habits
- Weight loss
In some cases, infants were normal and healthy after breastfeeding. Each case is unique and each individual is different. If you take Topamax and are considering breastfeeding, it’s important to weigh the benefits as well as the associated risks. Consults with your physician for more information.
Topamax Birth Defects and Liability
Several reports have indicated that taking certain antidepressant medications while pregnant will increase the risk of birth defects. Therefore, doctors have the obligation to tell their patients the potential hazards of taking the medication while pregnant.
If your physician failed to warn you about the risks associated with Celexa, they may be liable for damages should you or your infant develops health issues.
Additionally, drug manufacturers have the responsibility to tell the public, including physicians, of the potential hazards of taking their medications while pregnant. If they are negligent and fail to warn people of the medication’s danger, they may be responsible for any damages should birth defects and health issues occur.