Reported Depakote side effects range from nausea to birth defects
Depakote side effects do not affect all who take the drug. But they affect enough patients that the FDA issued a statement warning pregnant women and their healthcare providers about the risks of birth defects to children whose mothers took Depakote while pregnant.
Depakote side effects range from the unpleasant—tremors, nausea, headaches, dizziness and vomiting—to the potentially fatal: liver damage, pancreas damage, depression, suicidal thoughts, and birth defects in the children of pregnant women who take Depakote during their pregnancy. (1)
The potential side effects of Depakote have the potential to affect the lives of all who use it for its many FDA-approved and off-label uses. Depakote is an anti-epilepsy drug that has been approved for the treatment of migraines. Doctors also prescribe Depakote off-label for patients suffering from bipolar disorder and dementia.
For over twenty years, Weitz & Luxenberg has helped patients who suffer from the severe side effects of pharmaceutical drugs and medical devices. Whether you or your loved one suffer from epilepsy, bipolar disorder, migraines, or another illness for which Depakote is prescribed, your medication should not endanger your life or the life of your unborn child.
What are some of Depakote's side effects?
Depakote side effects include (2):
- hair loss
- blurred or double vision
- change in menstrual periods
- ringing in the ears (Tinnitus)
- shakiness (tremors)
- weight gain
- chest pain
- easy bruising/unexplained bleeding
- fast or irregular heartbeat
- swelling of hands and feet
- uncontrolled eye movement
- suicidal thoughts
- dark urine
- persistent nausea
- severe stomach/abdominal pain
- yellowing eyes or skin
Valproate sodium (and variations): the key behind Depakote side effects
Depakote is the brand name of dilvalproex sodium. Valproic acid, or valproate sodium, is the key ingredient in this variety of anti-epilepsy drugs—used to treat other illnesses such as bipolar disorder and migraines—that causes an increased risk of “major birth defects,” according to the FDA. (3)
On their site, the FDA reports that they notified health care professionals and patients about the increased risk of major birth defects in babies exposed to valproate sodium and related products during pregnancy. The products are marketed under the following brand names:
- Depacon (valproate sodium)
- Depakote, Depakote CP, Depakote ER (dilvalproex sodium)
- Depakene (valproic acid)
- Stavzor (valproic acid)
The FDA lists the risk in Depakote and similar drugs as “an increased risk of neural tube defects, such as defects of the brain and spinal cord, and other major birth defects, such as craniofacial defects (abnormally formed face and skull enclosing the brain) and cardiovascular malformations (abnormally formed heart or blood vessels), in babies exposed to valproate sodium and related products during pregnancy.” (3)
Depakote side effects: from the unpleasant to the fatal, you do not have to suffer them
Depakote side effects such as liver and pancreas damage, depression, worsened seizures, hair loss and vision damage are serious, and should not be ignored.
If you or someone close to you has suffered from Depakote side effects and you have been considering seeking justice for your losses, contact Weitz & Luxenberg for more information on your legal options. Call us at 1-800-476-6070 or fill out a form for your free legal consultation.
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Valproic Acid Recall? FDA does not recall valproic acid despite study proving that it increases risk of spina bifida
Valproic Acid (Depakote) has not been subject to a recall, but the FDA warns that it can cause birth defects if taken during pregnancy.
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