Following surgery or serious injury, doctors often prescribe opioids to help ease pain that ranges from moderate to severe. Used as prescribed for a brief time period, the medication is generally safe. However, if a pregnant woman becomes addicted to prescribed painkillers, her unborn baby could develop a very serious health condition or even lose its life through miscarriage.
According to a government report created in 2016, the number of infants born addicted to opioids as a result of their mothers’ use tripled in this country between the years of 1999 and 2013. Using opioids while pregnant not only causes an increased risk of low birth weight, premature birth, or birth defects, it can also lead to critical opioid withdrawal trauma called neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS) in the newborn. The horrible consequences of the syndrome include developmental delays, behavior issues, breathing problems, and an undeveloped liver.
If your child was born with neonatal abstinence syndrome from your use of doctor-prescribed opioids while pregnant, you may have sufficient cause to file a lawsuit for damages. A number of lawsuits are already in the court system accusing opioid manufacturers of downplaying the dependency dangers of painkillers like hydrocodone, tramadol, oxycodone, and others.