Friday, January 23, 2015

Zofran and Clubfoot

First, a brief update - Peter is 15 months old now, and he is doing great. His last appointment was mid-December, and his orthopedist said his feet look good. He got his third pair of new boots on Wednesday (he's now in a size 3). Putting them on is a bit more difficult because he's much more mobile - he thinks it's hilarious to try and throw himself off of the bed or changing table as I'm trying to strap on his boots.

He isn't walking yet, but he crawls all over the place (even with the BnB on!) and tries to pull himself up (usually when the dishwasher is open so he can try and throw dishes across the room). I tend to have late walkers (my oldest son didn't walk until he was 18 months) so I'm not worried. 

Now, on to the reason I'm emerging from my (unintentional) hiatus.

In one of the clubfoot support groups I'm in on Facebook, someone posted a link to info about a class action lawsuit related to women who took Zofran during pregnancy and then had a child with a birth defect. I'd read about Zofran potentially causing cleft palate and heart abnormalities a few months ago, but I had no idea that clubfoot was also a defect that Zofran may allegedly cause. (The link has not been proven, it is just suspected at this point.)

I did take Zofran regularly in the first trimester while I was pregnant with Peter (I also took it regularly during my pregnancy of his older brother, Gabriel, who does not have clubfoot). So, I filled out the form and submitted it. I received a call literally two minutes later from a lawyer, had a 30-minute phone conversation, and ended up signing paperwork to participate in a class action lawsuit, should one be filed.

I have the option to drop out at any time if I feel the need to do so. It's a contingency case, meaning the lawyers will only get paid if the lawsuit prevails and there is some kind of monetary reward (in that event, they get 40% and I get 60% of whatever the individual reward is).

But I didn't sign up to participate because of the money - if there is a link between Zofran and clubfoot (or other defects), I want it publicized, and I want the company held accountable for making sure that other moms know the risk. Women need to be able to make an informed choice about taking it during pregnancy. I wish I had known. Now, because of the suspected link, I will not take it during any future pregnancies, despite the crippling nausea I always experience. I don't know if it caused Peter's clubfoot, but I'd rather not take the risk if there is one, just in case it was the cause.

Anyway, if you are a clubfoot mom and you took Zofran in the first trimester, as I did, you may want to find out more information about the lawsuit. You can fill out a questionnaire here, and the law firm will call you if they think you are eligible to participate.

Bear in mind that if you are chosen to participate, and they end up filing a case, you will be involved in litigation. They will likely comb through your medical records from your pregnancy and try to find out if you did anything else that could have caused clubfoot. Affidavits, depositions, and maybe even court testimony may be required. But again, read the contract carefully before you sign (if given the opportunity) so you know exactly what you are getting into.


  1. Wow. My heart literally dropped when I read your blog title. I took zofran with my first child, who has clubfoot. I always harbored guilt about it, wondering later if it was linked and if I should have just sucked it up with the nausea. I didn't take it with my second pregnancy because of these fears. My doctor assured me it was safe, but in retrospect I always questioned and carried that guilt. Not sure about the lawsuit, but you're totally right that if there is indeed a link, it should be publicized and they should be held accountable. Thanks for sharing this.

  2. My Son was born with clubfoot. I was not on any kind of medication, they told me it could be hereditary or I was missing nutrients my first 3 mo of pregnancy. Interesting to hear this story.

  3. I also took Zofran ( Ondansetron ) throughout my first and second trimester with my first child. She was born with bilateral curbed foot, a VSD ( hole in her heart), and other medical conditions. Both my husband and I have no family history of these conditions. We also contacted a lawyer and have moved forward with the lawsuit and like you it has nothing to do about the money. Big pharmaceutical companies like these that allow their drugs to be misused or push them for alternative uses need to be held accountable. Fortunately for use we have amazing healthcare coverage that helped keep our family out of unforseen amounts of debt. My heart breaks for those that have to deal with these conditions and covering the medical expenses on their own.

  4. My son was born with severe bilateral clubfeet and is now almost 4. He healed great so he was released from his dobbs bar at 3, and just yesterday I noticed his right foot starting to turn in and the last 3 weeks he keeps saying "he sprained his foot" he was also born with a VSD and kidney reflux... I'm going to look into this as I took zofran throughout my first trimester


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