Aortic stenosis is characterized by the narrowing of the heart’s aortic valve. As a result, blood flow away from the heart is constricted and proper circulation to the rest of the body is inhibited. In this article we will discuss the signs and symptoms, causes, risk factors, complications, tests and diagnosis for aortic stenosis.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with aortic stenosis after taking an antidepressant, you should contact our lawyers immediately for a free confidential case evaluation. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and we can help.
Signs & Symptoms of Aortic Stenosis
Symptoms of aortic stenosis may not develop right away, making them very difficult to detect. Once developed however, the symptoms can range from mild to severe, depending on the extent of the narrowed aorta. Symptoms may include:
- Chest pain (angina)
- Fainting spells
- Shortness of breath
- Heart palpitations
- Heart murmur
Because aortic stenosis weakens the heart, symptoms of heart failure may develop. These symptoms include fatigue, shortness of breath, and swollen ankles and feet.
Causes of Aortic Stenosis
Many complications can narrow the passage way between your heart and aorta. Causes of aortic stenosis include:
- Congenital heart defect: Many antidepressants have been linked to increased birth defects like aortic stenosis in infants born to mothers who were prescribed the drugs during pregnancy.
- Calcium buildup on the valve: As blood repeatedly flows over the aortic valve, deposits of calcium can accumulate on the valve’s leaflets.
- Rheumatic fever: A complication of strep throat infection, rheumatic fever may result in scar tissue forming on the aortic valve. Scar tissue alone can narrow the aortic valve and lead to aortic valve stenosis.
Risk Factors of Aortic Stenosis
Aortic stenosis is not a preventable disease. People are either born with it or develop it later in life because they were born with a bicuspid aortic valve. This bicuspid aortic valve only has two flaps and is considered a major risk factor in the development of aortic stenosis. Antidepressant are also considered a risk factor. They have been linked to an increased risk of congenital birth defects including aortic stenosis in children born to mothers who took them while pregnant. The following is a list of antidepressants that have been linked to this type of birth defect:
- Zoloft (Sertraline)
- Celexa (Citalopram)
- Prozac (Fluoxetine)
- Lexapro (Escitalopram)
- Symbyax (fluoxetine and olanzapine)
- Effexor (Venlafaxine)
Aortic Stenosis Complications
The most serious complication associated with aortic stenosis is the deterioration of heart strength. Over time, the left ventricle is weakened because of the excess amounts of stress being placed on it. If neglected, aortic stenosis can lead to potentially fatal heart complications, including:
- Heart failure
- Cardiac arrest
Aortic Stenosis Tests & Diagnosis
The following diagnostic tests can determine if your baby has developed aortic stenosis:
- Chest X-ray
- Cardiac catheterization
For more information on these tests, please visit Mayoclinic.com.
Do I Have an Aortic Stenosis Lawsuit?
The trial lawyers at The Senators (Ret.) Firm, LLP have decades of experience navigating through complex legislative and regulatory issues and litigating high stakes cases all over the nation. Our law firm focuses on the representation of plaintiffs in aortic stenosis lawsuits. We are currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.
Again, if you or a loved one has been diagnosed with aortic stenosis after taking an antidepressant, you should contact our lawyers immediately by clicking the link below or calling toll free 1-800-773-0849. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and we can help.