According to a new survey that was released by Epilepsy Action, epileptic women are not given the necessary information they need about contraception and pregnancy. Because of this lack of information, it is believed that they are not able to make informed decisions when choosing epilepsy treatments before and during pregnancy.
When epileptics become pregnant, the pregnancy is viewed as “high risk” because the condition can be dangerous for both the mom and her offspring. Most often the risks come from the seizures themselves changing and the medication the women take to control their epilepsy. For example, some medications like Topamax cause birth defects in babies whose mothers take the pills while pregnant. Some of those side effects include PPHN, spina bifida, neural tube defects, oral clefts and heart, lung and brain defects.
Sometimes, a baby can be born with some form of deformation if the mother is epileptic. Experts believe that if women can be better informed before pregnancy, they can prevent some of these conditions from happening — hence the reason for the survey. Researchers interviewed nearly 500 epileptic women and found that 26 percent stated that their doctors did not talk to them about their condition and pregnancy, even though national guidelines state that doctors should provide pre-conception counselling to epileptic women. This is significant because it shows that women taking harmful medications like Topamax could easily prevent the dangers posed to their babies if their doctors took the time to support them. This survey may help get the word out to doctors to help pregnant epileptic women and women considering pregnancy to make safer choices in the future.
If your baby has suffered from birth defects after being exposed to Topamax in-utero, contact attorney Greg Jones today for a free consultation. I am experienced at fighting Topamax lawsuits and may be able to help you recover money for your child’s injury.
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