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Birth Defects could have been prevented

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"If the doctors had the right information and found out that pregnant women should not take Paxil, Matthew would be a normal, healthy boy running around, playing with his friends," says Angala Nelms of Laurinburg, North Carolina.

devastating effects of Paxil"I want to leave it up to the lawyers to deal with GlaxoSmithKline. These drug makers say they are out there to help you but my feeling is that they just want to get your money," she adds. "If it wasn't for Medicaid I don't know what we would do - my husband and I are still paying for the inutero surgery I had to correct my son's spina bifida.

"I was diagnosed with depression and migraines and my doctor put me on Paxil in between pregnancies back in 2001. I had my sixth child on December 1, 1999 and including Matthew, I now have seven boys.

In 2002 I became pregnant with Matthew and I was still on Paxil. This concerned me so I talked to my obstetrician who subsequently looked into it and told me it was safe. I continued taking Paxil throughout my pregnancy. At 18 weeks gestation, Matthew was diagnosed with spina bifida. At first, my doctor told me it was due to folic acid deficiency but that was impossible: since giving birth to my twins in 1996, I had taken folic acid daily. And there are no cases of spina bifida on either side of our families.

At 23 weeks gestation, Matthew had inutero surgery in Nashville, Tennessee. The surgery was successful but I had to have a needle inserted into my leg which gave me medication to stop premature labor. Even then, Matthew was born six weeks prematurely on January 12, 2003. Three months later he had to have a shunt placed in his head and so far he has undergone five surgeries. Poor little guy is only three years old. Matthew can't walk and he has problems with his bladder and bowels. We have to take him to the hospital at least once every few months for a slew of problems, from spina bifida to neurological disorders, and the drive takes two hours each way.

Matthew is in special handicapped classes at school and he is just now beginning to realize that he can't do things that other kids can do. Because he is still so young, Matthew doesn't say much about his disabilities but he asks why his brothers can do something and he can't. He doesn't understand yet, but when he does, life is going to get that much harder for him. Next year Matthew will need another shunt in his head and he will need bladder surgery as well as many other procedures throughout his life. It is a hardship for all of us. Matthew requires 24 hour care - he can't even get in and out of bed by many things he can't do.

My doctor isn't forthcoming when it comes to talking about Paxil. And I only found out in the past six months about all the problems it is causing.

I am so furious because this all could have been prevented.


Paxil Birth Defects Legal Help

If you took Paxil during pregnancy, and your baby was born with PPHN, please contact a lawyer involved in a possible [Paxil Birth Defects Lawsuit] to review your case at no cost or obligation.


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