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Cerebral Palsy and Other Birth Defects Linked to Indomethacin

Submitted by jrlaw on Nov 5th, 2007

According to new research published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Indomethacin, a drug used to stop pre-term labor, could actually cause birth injuries such as brain damage, including cerebral palsy, as well as intestinal problems in infants. Indomethacin affects blood flow to the fetus, which has been known, but the possible dangers haven't been fully studied. This new study, conducted by researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center, is the first to take an in-depth look at the health consequences of indomethacin use in premature babies.

If a baby is born very early, it is likely that he will be born without the ability to breath on its own. One common method of dealing with pre-term labor is to give the mother a combination of a tocolytic agent like indomethacin to prevent birth. Typically a steroid is also administered to help speed the development of the baby's lungs and a healthy birth is more likely after the indomethacin is stopped.

Indomethacin it typically only used when a baby is going to be born much earlier than it should resulting in health risks for the baby. Although some doctors use it when a pregnancy is further along, believing that indomethacin has fewer side effects than other tocolytic agents.

If your child was born with brain damage or intestinal problems and you were given indomethacin to prevent a premature birth, you may be able to receive monetary damages to compensate for medical expenses and the unnecessary pain and suffering of your child. Contact our birth injury lawyers immediately for a free case evaluation.