Paxil Side Effects – Suicide, Birth Defects & Death from Coronary Artery Disease

Antidepressant drugs have received a lot of scrutiny in recent years because of the large number of life-threatening and serious side effects they produce. Studies have shown that the antidepressant Paxil, manufactured by the pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline, is more likely to produce deadly side effects than other SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) drugs. See Paxil Information and Warnings for more information about Paxil’s safety.

Paxil produces a variety of side effects, all of them serious and several deadly.

Paxil is the only SSRI that carries an FDA warning for birth defects, and Paxil has been particularly linked to heart birth defects. Like other SSRI antidepressants, Paxil has also been linked to abdominal wall and brain birth defects in infants. The most recent side effect discovery concerns yet another form of birth defect. Infants born to mothers taking SSRIs in the last half of pregnancy are 6 times more likely to have persistent pulmonary hypertension (PPHN). Infants with this disorder are unable to get enough oxygen and require intensive care. Usually 10 to 20 percent die soon after birth and some survivors suffer from deafness and neurological problems.

Paxil and other SSRI drugs cause problems to babies whose mothers took the drugs during pregnancy, even if they are born without defects. These newborns often suffer withdrawal symptoms including:

  • Seizures
  • Tremors
  • Jitters
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sleep disturbance

Additional studies have linked SSRIs with premature births and stillbirths. The long-term effects of fetal exposure to SSRI drugs like Paxil have not been tested and won’t be known for several years.

Paxil has also been linked to increased risk for:

  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Suicide attempts
  • Violent behavior
  • Aggression
  • Agitation
  • Worsening emotional states
  • Anxiety
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Gastrointestinal complications

An estimated 50 to 75 percent of patients who stop taking Paxil suffer withdrawal symptoms, which might include (and increase) suicidal thoughts and attempts. Other withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Electric “zaps” in the brain
  • Dizziness and vertigo
  • Nightmares
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Crying spells
  • Tremors
  • Agitation and irritability
  • Confusion
  • Difficulty concentrating and remembering
  • Changes in gait and coordination
  • Lethargy and fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • High fever
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Diarrhea

Another Paxil side effect has surprised researchers, because at this time it cannot be explained. SSRIs have also been found in a Duke University study to increase the risk of death in patients with coronary artery disease by 55 percent.

Recent studies have revealed another surprise. SSRI use has been linked to loss of bone density and bone in elderly men and women.

If you or a family member have suffered injury for Paxil side effects, you might be able to receive damages. See Paxil Attorney and Lawyer – How to Hire to find an attorney to evaluate your case and your assess your legal options.

Check out the following articles for more information about Paxil, filing a Paxil lawsuit and finding a Paxil attorney.