A Congenital Hand Deformity is a difference in the way a child’s hand develops, and may include extra fingers, webbed digits, connected fingers, missing fingers, or extra large fingers. Hand deformities may negatively impact a child’s self-esteem, ability to socialize, write, and use their hand. Most parents decide to have their child undergo surgery. Some types of medications (including Depakote, Depakene, antidepressants, and SSRIs) can cause birth defects, such as hand deformities, in babies born to women who took these medications during pregnancy.
Do I Have a Congenital Hand Deformity Lawsuit? Collen A. Clark is a true advocate for his clients and is passionate about helping Texans that have been injured or wronged. If you or a loved one has given birth to a child with a birth defect after taking Depakote, Depakene, an SSRI, antidepressant, or other medication during pregnancy, you should contact our lawyers immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a Congenital Hand Deformity lawsuit.
Congenital Hand Deformity Overview
A “congenital” birth defect is one that develops while the baby is in the womb, and is present when the baby is born.
The hand develops between four and eight weeks after conception. The fetus develops an arm bud at approximately four weeks, and the fundamental parts of the arm and hand continue to develop for the next four weeks. Any disruption to this delicate process can cause an abnormality of the hand.
Many children born with different hand developments have little or no functional impairment. It usually does not become a problem until the child enters school, and negative attention from other children makes the child self-conscious. This can harm the child’s self-esteem. The child’s ability to write may also be impaired. Usually, parents decide to have a hand surgeon change the cosmetic appearance of the hand.
Depakote, Depakene, Paxil, Zoloft, Celexa, Lexapro, Symbyax, Effexor, and Wellbutrin linked to Congenital Hand Deformity
Do not start or stop taking any medication without first talking to your doctor. Did you know that over-the-counter medications, prescription medicines, dietary supplements, and herbal supplements can all affect your unborn baby? Talk to your doctor about all medications you are taking.
SSRIs / Antidepressant Drugs: Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs) and antidepressant medications may cause birth defects, such as congenital hand deformities, when mothers take these medications during pregnancy. If you have taken one of the following medications and had a baby with a birth defect, you may have a lawsuit against the drug-manufacturers.
SSRIs and antidepressants include the following prescription medications:
- Paxil, Seroxat (paroxetine)
- Zoloft, Lustral (sertraline)
- Celexa (citalopram)
- Lexapro, Cipralex (escitalopram)
- Symbyax (fluxetine and olanzapine)
- Wellbutrin, Zyban (bupropion)
- Effexor (vanlafaxine)
Anti-Convulsant Medicine: Some types of prescription medicines used for the prevention of seizures, manic-depressive episodes, migraine headaches, and other mood conditions may increase a pregnant woman’s chance of having a baby with a congenital hand deformity. These medicines include:
- Depakote CP
- Depakote ER
Types of Congenital Hand Differences
Clubhand: Including “radial clubhand” and “ulnar clubhand,” occur when parts of the hand stop developing when the baby is in the womb. Often the hand is missing a structure, or the bones are abnormally short. If the child is missing parts of the hand, surgery is not an option, and the child will be introduced to prosthetic devices to help facilitate normal development.
Extra fingers (also known as polydactyly): This condition occurs when the child is born with more than five fingers. Usually, the extra digit is merely a small piece of soft tissue that can easily be removed. More rarely, the digit contains bones, but not joints. Very rarely, the extra digit is a fully functioning finger. This condition may be inherited or occur spontaneously.
Webbed fingers (also known as syndactyly): This condition occurs when the fingers do not separate while the hand is developing, and instead, the spaces between the fingers are connected with skin. This is usually easily correctible with surgery. In severe cases, the connected fingers involve multiple fingers that share tendons, nerves, blood vessels, or bones.
Large Fingers (also known as macrodactyly): This rare condition occurs when one or more fingers grow too much, and are abnormally large. Surgery to fix this condition is very complex.
Thumb malformations (also known as trigger thumb): This is a condition involving the thumb, where the tendon is too thick or has a bump that prevents the thumb from moving normally. The thumb may be fixed in a bent position, or become locked in a “trigger” when it is used.
Treatment & Prognosis
Early consultation with a hand doctor is an important part of the treatment process. Hand deformities can be especially disabling, because children learn to interact with their environment by using their hands.
The goal of surgical treatment is to improve the function of the hand and help the child lead a normal life. Treatment depends on the type of deformity, how severe it is, and individual factors. Some treatment options include:
- Separation and reconstruction of fingers
- Removal of extra fingers
- Prosthetic devices
- Physical therapy to improve motor skills
Do I Have a Congenital Hand Deformity Lawsuit?
For a free consultation, please contact Collen A. Clark at The Clark Firm, LLP immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a Congenital Hand Deformity lawsuit.
Collen’s amazing success in the courtroom and well known dedication to his clients has earned him the recognition of his peers as one of The Top Trial Lawyers in Texas.”
The Clark Firm has assembled a team of trial lawyers with more that 100 years experience, participation in over 600 jury trials and $60 million in verdicts and/or settlements. Please use the form below to contact us for a free Congenital Hand Deformity birth defect lawsuit review.