If your baby is born with a birth defect, it is natural to be confused and scared. Some birth defects we have control over, and others happen naturally. Cleft palate birth defects are those that can be caused internally or externally. It has been recently discovered that the drug Topamax, an anti-convulsant used to treat seizures and migraines, can cause cleft palate birth defects in fetuses when taken by pregnant women in their first trimester. If you are a pregnant woman who has been prescribed the drug because no other treatment options are available, you might want to begin taking additional supplements that may be able to counter act the negative effects of Topamax.
Multivitamins Have Been Shown to Reduce Risks of Birth Defects
First and foremost, many research studies have shown that taking multivitamins when pregnant can prevent birth defects and help strengthen your fetus’s health. Folic Acidis a vitamin B that aids the body in making healthy cells. Folic acid can be prescribed by a primary physician or by an OB/GYN. With technology rapidly enhancing, genetic counseling is now available that can test family history or test for chromosomal syndromes that can increase your baby’s chance of birth defects. Other prenatal vitamins (which may include folic acid) are recommended for pregnant women to ensure the health of a baby’s immune system.
Expectant mothers need to be especially careful after discovering that they are pregnant. During pregnancy, a mother’s behavior and choices may drastically affect her baby’s future health. For instance, one should avoid alcohol, tobacco, and other harmful products, and avoid stressful situations that can harm the baby. Alcohol and tobacco have been shown to hinder a fetus’s growth and development – and this is no different for increasing the risk of birth defects.
Cleft lip and cleft palate are birth defects that may or may not be avoided by these supplements. Some fetuses are genetically predisposed to the defect and a pregnant mother who takes exceptional care of her body during pregnancy may be able to avoid the hardships. However, taking Topamax during pregnancy will only increase the risks of having a child with cleft lip and cleft palate birth defects. Make sure you discuss other options with your doctor before you begin the treatment.
For more information on prenatal vitamins and supplements, visit the American Pregnancy Association website.
Cleft Palate Birth Defects Lawyers in New Jersey and Philadelphia
If your child was born with a birth defect and you believe it may be attributed to your use of Topamax during pregnancy, it is likely that you have some questions. Please contact the Mininno Law Office for a free case evaluation, or call for a free consultation at (856) 833-0600 in New Jersey, or (215) 567-2380 in Philadelphia.