Research by some of the top medical research organizations reveals a significant link between autism, ADHD, and other neurological disorders in children and their mothers’ use of acetaminophen during pregnancy.
This research indicates that babies of women who use acetaminophen, the active ingredient in Tylenol, during pregnancy have a substantially increased risk of developing autism and ADHD.
Research results have been so dramatic and convincing since their debut in 2019 that many major medical facilities are changing how they prescribe and direct the use of Tylenol to pregnant women. In addition, the research is potentially crucial to understanding the historical prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and ADHD in children.
If you believe your child’s autism or ADHD may be tied to a corporation’s inappropriate marketing, you can work with our Connecticut personal injury lawyers to draft a product liability claim. Autism and ADHD Tylenol lawyers throughout Connecticut can help you join in a class action or file an independent lawsuit.
What Are NSAIDs?
Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs, or NSAIDs, constitute a class of drugs that include popular over-the-counter brands and prescription brands like:
- Ibuprofen (Advil , Motrin)
- Aspirin (Bayer, Excedrin)
- Naproxen (Aleve)
- Celecoxib (Celebrex)
- Ketorolac tromethamine (Torardol)
NSAIDs commonly treat headaches, rheumatoid arthritis pain, backaches, muscle aches, dental pain, and menstrual cramps.
Over-The-Counter Acetaminophen and Tylenol
Major retailers like Walmart, Target, Sam’s Club, Walgreens, Rite-Aid, and other Connecticut storefronts often purchase over-the-counter pain relievers containing acetaminophen for resale.
Connecticut stores and pharmacies also sell acetaminophen under the brand name “Tylenol” and under generic store-branded versions of Tylenol.
In addition, Connecticut’s autism ADHD Tylenol lawyers note that Tylenol is not the only name brand that contains acetaminophen. Other over-the-counter brands containing acetaminophen sold in Connecticut and other states include the following:
- NyQuil and DayQuil
- Alka-Seltzer Plus
Professionally-prescribed drugs like Vicodin, Percocet, and Ultracet may also contain acetaminophen.
For a free legal consultation with a autism adhd tylenol lawyer serving Connecticut, call (855)-285-3425
Whydo Medical Professionals Prescribe Tylenol to Pregnant Women?
Most women are directed not to take ibuprofen or other over-the-counter pain relievers during pregnancy. The use of pain relievers called NSAIDs, which include ibuprofen, aspirin, naproxen, and others, during pregnancy has long been considered to be dangerous to developing fetuses if taken during certain times in the gestation period.
In fact, most experts recommended avoiding NSAIDs entirely after 30 weeks.
Then, in 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued new warnings about the use of ibuprofen, the active ingredient in Advil, and other NSAIDs after 20 weeks of pregnancy. The FDA and other researchers warned of an increased risk of kidney damage to the fetuses of women who used ibuprofen and other NSAIDs after 20 weeks.
Research has also shown an increase in other developmental disorders. As a result of these warnings and previous warnings, it’s routine for medical practitioners in Connecticut, such as doctors, nurse practitioners, and OB-GYNs, to prescribe over-the-counter Tylenol or generic forms of acetaminophen for pain relief.
While low and irregular doses may remain safe for pregnant women, prolonged or frequent use to relieve common pregnancy-related pain has been shown to have the same adverse effects on fetuses as those of other pain relievers.
Connecticut Autism ADHD Tylenol Lawyer Near Me (855)-285-3425
The Growing Public Health Crisis of Autism and ADHD Tylenol
In 2021, a groundbreaking report on the link between autism, ADHD, and other developmental disabilities and the use of acetaminophen was released in the medical journal Nature Reviews Endocrinology.
The report, called a Consensus Statement, was the product of research by a 13-member team, including researchers from the Yale School of Medicine in Connecticut who analyzed and compiled a body of research on the risk of prenatal exposure to acetaminophen.
OB-GYNs immediately pushed back. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists released a response that indicated that the group would not recommend any change to the use of and prescription of acetaminophen to pregnant women.
However, the link between prenatal exposure to acetaminophen and developmental delays such as autism and ADHD has been supported by a study conducted by the National Institute of Health and Johns Hopkins University.
Another 2020 research study on the use of acetaminophen, the active ingredient in name brand Tylenol, published in the Medical Journal Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology, reported that nearly 62% of women studied reported the use of acetaminophen during pregnancy.
According to the study, the most common reason why pregnant women used acetaminophen during pregnancy was for headaches. The study concluded:
It may likely be the case that autism spectrum disorder diagnoses in children have increased as a consequence of Tylenol and generic Tylenol increasingly becoming the go-to form of pain relief for pregnant women. If this is the case, injured parties can work with Connecticut’s autism and ADHD attorneys to pursue civil claims.
It is reported that as of 2022, the rate of autism in the Connecticut population is between 3.0 to 3.9%. And Autism Spectrum Disorder’s prevalence is increasing in Connecticut and in the rest of the United States. In 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released its biennial update on the prevalence of autism in the United States.
According to the organization Autism Speaks, the CDC report confirmed that autism continues to become increasingly more prevalent in children in the United States. The CDC reported that in 2016 one in 54 children had a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, which reflected a 10% increase from 2014.
What Is Autism and What Are the Signs of Autism in Children?
“Autism” serves as a more general term for Autism Spectrum Disorder because autism presents itself along an “arc” of different combinations of behaviors, impairments, and skills. Not every child diagnosed with autism presents with the same behaviors and skills.
Unlike other disorders, children with Autism Spectrum Disorder include a wide variety of signs and symptoms. Some people diagnosed with autism are high functioning. Others are severely disabled. Unfortunately, medical practitioners in Connecticut and other states do not have a blood test or genetic test that can be done in utero to diagnose the likelihood that a baby will have autism.
Instead, an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis is typically made when symptoms begin to appear over the first few years of life. The National Alliance of Mental Illness of Connecticut reports that the signs and symptoms of autism include:
- Repetitive behaviors, such as eating only the same food every day
- Difficulty making eye contact
- Playtime that is spent lining up toys instead of engaging in pretend play
- Misinterpreting facial cues and expressions
- Language developmental delays
- Difficulty expressing emotions
- Difficult social interactions
Since there is no definitive blood test that can confirm a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder in Connecticut, the state of Connecticut publishes guidelines for the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder.
Although those with autism have it for life, early intervention and diagnosis will allow for early treatment and therapies that can help those impacted by autism and parents to better manage it.
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The Manufacturers of Tylenol Have Been Sued for Defective Products
Johnson & Johnson, an American multinational company, manufactures Tylenol. It is one of the most valuable companies to exist and has been in operation for nearly 150 years. It is also no stranger to mass tort claims by persons who claim to have been injured by its products.
In fact, one of the largest jury verdicts in United States history was levied against Johnson & Johnson. In 2018, a Missouri jury awarded nearly $4.69 billion to 22 plaintiffs. The verdict was reduced to $2.11 billion dollars, still one of the largest jury verdicts for a defective product in history.
In that case, the plaintiffs alleged that Johnson & Johnson’s talc powder product caused ovarian cancer in women. The plaintiffs further alleged that Johnson & Johnson knew that its product was dangerous.
At this time, there are no cases directly against Johnson & Johnson alleging it knew or should have known of the unreasonable risk of autism or ADHD in children whose mothers used Tylenol while pregnant. There seems to be little doubt, however, that lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson will be filed.
You can discuss the impact of these upcoming cases on your own opportunities for legal action with autism and ADHD Tylenol attorneys in Connecticut.
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Consolidated Lawsuits by Mothers With Children Diagnosed With Autism and ADHD Against
Nearly all pending lawsuits pending in federal court involving Tylenol and its alleged link to autism and ADHD have been “consolidated” onto the Multidistrict Litigation docket. This is a special federal district court docket that allows similar cases, with similar facts and issues to be litigated together.
Essentially, cases follow the same pleadings and discovery schedule, have the same judge, and are subject to the same court orders and rules instead of multiple cases in multiple districts throughout the United States. The consolidated Tylenol/Autism cases have been grouped together and sent to the Southern District of New York in Manhattan.
Unlike a class action, a plaintiff alleging injuries caused by the use of acetaminophen does not “join” one case. Rather, each case is joined together. Instead of multiple plaintiffs in one case, there are multiple cases in one action.
Let’s say you are now a Connecticut resident. While living in Connecticut, you were prescribed and used Tylenol or a store brand while pregnant and delivered a baby later diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, or another developmental disorder tied to your use of acetaminophen.
If you have a claim, then a Connecticut ADHD and autism Tylenol lawyer could bring your lawsuit in Connecticut. If your personal injury attorney filed in state court in Hartford, then the out-of-state defendant, such as Wal-Mart, may remove the matter from Hartford Superior Court to the federal United States District Court for the District of Connecticut, also located in Hartford.
At that point, it may be sent from the District of Connecticut to the multidistrict litigation docket in the Southern District of New York and join cases from all over the nation. Your Connecticut lawyer would still be involved. In a class action, however, you would simply opt in to the already pending class action claim.
Either way, your case would still be considered under Connecticut law unless your personal injury attorney brought a claim under federal law. Usually, for product liability law, the state products liability statute will apply.
More than likely, your attorney would bring a claim under Connecticut’s statutes governing actions for product liability. This is true even if your case ends up in federal court in New York.
Things Your Personal Injury Lawyer May Need to Bring a Products Liability Claim Against the
The product liability claim parents can bring forward in the wake of autism or ADHD Tylenol connection falls under Connecticut’s definition of personal injury. Because a product liability claim is a type of negligence claim, survivors and their attorneys must prove duty of care, a breach thereof, causation, and the survivor’s right to damages.
To help prove your case under Connecticut law, your attorney may ask you to help them gather:
- Receipts showing that you purchased Tylenol or a similar product during your pregnancy
- Medical records from your OB-GYN or other provider showing that you were prescribed acetaminophen for some pregnancy-related condition, like headaches or muscle aches
- Your child’s pediatric medical records to confirm a diagnosis of
- Autism Spectrum Disorder or ADHD, and the degree to which your child suffers from an applicable condition
- Records of other testing, such as genetic testing, that may have been done on your child after birth and which may rule out other causes
Your attorney can also rely on their professional network to bring an expert witness to your case. Expert witnesses can elaborate on the alleged causal relationship between acetaminophen and conditions like autism and ADHD on a jury’s behalf.
You can discuss your child’s diagnosis and its relationship to acetaminophen use with our team today. Contact us online or by phone to schedule a free case consultation with our autism ADHD Tylenol lawyers in Connecticut.