Heart valve disease is considered a congenital birth defect that causes the valves in the heart to form abnormally. When these valves ,or cusps as they are often referred to, do not function properly, they can not regulate the proper directional flow of blood. The results of improper blood flow through the heart may lead to severe and potentially deadly side effects. In this article we will discuss the signs and symptoms, causes, risk factors and complications of heart valve disease.
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with heart valve disease 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 Heart Valve Disease
Many symptoms of heart valve disease do not directly correlate to the severity of the disease itself. However, symptoms can range from mild to severe and potentially life threatening. Symptoms often associated with heart valve disease include shortness of breath, dizziness, discomfort in the chest, palpitations, edema and rapid weight gain.
Causes of Heart Valve Disease
For the most part, doctors agree that the specific causes of heart valve disease in children remain unknown. However, in July 2006, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning about the heart defects risk caused by using antidepressants during pregnancy. Antidepressants have been linked to an increased risk of heart valve disease in children born to mothers who took them during pregnancy. The following is a list of antidepressant medications that have been linked to this type of birth defect:
- Zoloft (Sertraline)
- Celexa (Citalopram)
- Prozac (Fluoxetine)
- Lexapro (Escitalopram)
- Symbyax (fluoxetine and olanzapine)
- Effexor (Venlafaxine)
Risk Factors Associated With Heart Valve Disease
Mothers taking any of the antidepressants listed above while pregnant may greatly increase the chances that their child will develop a cardiovascular disease such as heart valve disease.
Complications Associated With Heart Valve Disease
Numerous complications with heart valve disease may occur. These complications generally tend to begin in middle-aged or older adults and can include the following:
- Mitral valve regurgitation
- Heart rhythm problems
- Heart valve infection
For a detailed description of these complications, please visit Mayoclinic.com.
Heart Valve Disease Diagnosis
Your child’s pediatrician can diagnose heart valve disease by recognizing symptoms, performing a physical exam, and giving your child other tests. During a physical exam, the doctor will listen to your baby’s heart to hear the sounds it makes as the valves open and close. A murmur is a swishing sound made by blood flowing through a stenotic or leaky valve. The doctor will also listen to your baby’s lungs to hear if he or she is retaining fluid in the lungs, which shows the heart is not able to pump as well as it should. After the physical exams, the doctor may order additional diagnostic tests.
Do I have a Heart Valve Disease 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 heart valve disease lawsuits. We are currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.
Again, if you or a loved one has been diagnosed with heart valve disease after taking an antidepressant, you should contact our lawyers immediately by clicking the link below or calling toll free 1-(949) 557-5800. You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and we can help.