FDA: Pregnant Women Should Enroll in Antiepileptic Pregnancy Registry

The worst thing about the birth defect risks associated with the anticonvulsant medication Topamax is that in many cases, there is little that can be done to prevent it because most of the defects happen to the baby before the mother even knows that she is pregnant.

Women often feel safe from pregnancy when using various birth control devices and will take Topamax with the belief that the birth defect risks don’t apply to them. However, as all birth control methods come with some risk of pregnancy, that pregnancy can also result in birth defects for the babies if the mother is taking Topamax. While there is little a woman can do for herself if this happens, the FDA is trying to alert doctors to inform women that there is something that they can do to help other women.

The FDA is recommending that doctors encourage women to enroll in the North American Antiepileptic Drug (NAAED) Pregnancy Registry. The NAAED pregnancy registry helps to keep track of pregnant women that are taking antiepileptic drugs like Topamax. The Registry is designed to collect information on just how common it is for babies to be born with birth defects when born to epileptic mothers. Some of those birth defects include, heart defects, spina bifida and cleft lip/palate.

Right now the registry is focused on the newer drugs like Topamax and is the first registry of its kind that is operated by the hospital. As of September 2010, 7,700 women from the United States and Canada have already enrolled, but the hospital is hoping for more so that officials can be certain that the information they generate is accurate. If you choose to participate, you don’t have to do much. All that is really needed is for you to take part in three interviews so that they can track your pregnancy, during and immediately after the birth.

This can be a great way to get more information about the birth defects risks and effects associated with drugs like Topamax, and your participation can help millions of women in the future. If your child was born with birth defects caused by Topamax, contact attorney Greg Jones today for a free consultation.

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