Baby’s lips form during the fourth and seventh weeks of pregnancy. They begin growing from the sides, and connect in the middle. Those lines directly under your nose are evidence of your lips joining together to make a continuous lip. When they don’t join together, a cleft lip is the result. The hole in the lip can be on either side, but most commonly is near the center. Genetics can be a factor, but most often there are outside factors that contribute to the deformity occurring. Medications given during pregnancy can be one of those factors.
Zofran is a controversial drug that was created to help cancer patients manage their nausea during treatments. It works by suppressing the chemicals that are responsible for nausea and vomiting. However, it began being prescribed to expectant mothers for their morning sickness. There had not been research done about the use of this medication by pregnant women, and the FDA had not approved it for use by pregnant women for their morning illness.
The connections between Zofran and the development of cleft lips are still unclear, but Zofran lawyers are investigating the matter. Babies that suffer from cleft lips have a difficult time feeding properly and can suffer from poor nutrition and stunted growth. As they grow older, they can have difficulty speaking clearly. The only way to correct this deformity is through surgery early on in the child’s life. More than one surgery may be necessary, and this creates unnecessary pain and suffering for the child that could have been avoided.