A MOREDON mum hopes a debate in the House of Commons about a controversial epilepsy drug given to women while they were pregnant will lead to action on why they were not warned about the dangers.

Natasha Mason, who has taken sodium valproate – more commonly known Epilim – since she was a child, says her three-year-old son Alfie has shown symptoms after he was born at Great Western Hospital. According to the 28-year-old he is non-verbal, has severe autism and also has a chromosome deletion.

The debate, to be held tomorrow, has been tabled by Norman Lamb MP and will discuss systematic failures to inform women of the dangers of taking the epilepsy drug during pregnancy, which has resulted in thousands of children being born with physical disabilities and neurodevelopmental issues.

Natasha said: “There are about 20,000 children who are affected but our little boy is only three and back in 2014 there was some awareness but no-one gave out any advice.

“It was only last year that they started to put warnings on the packaging and that was obviously too late for me.

“If they knew there was an effect they should have acted on it but they didn’t want people to worry so they didn’t bother, I think they’ve neglected people.

“I am very surprised that not many people know about it. It was only when it was in the national media that so many people came forward to say they had taken it.”

At the debate tomorrow, MPs will be discussing the findings of Epilepsy Society’s survey, run in conjunction with Epilepsy Action and Young Epilepsy, which showed that 68 per cent of women taking the medication have not received a special valproate toolkit launched by the Medicines and Healthcare products Agency in February 2016.

More than 2,000 girls and women of childbearing age took part in the survey.

It is not known if North Swindon MP Justin Tomlinson, who represents Moredon, will join the debate but Natasha hopes other MPs unite to take action.

“I am hoping our MP is going and I want him to support the people because it is not only me that is affected and I want him to stand up for us and find out why we weren’t warned about all of this years ago,” she said.

“It is a 40-year cover up from the health department which I think is appalling. I want answers.

“I hope something comes from it and all I want to know is why the manufacturers didn’t know how it affected the families.

“Our little one has autism which was affected by the drug and so ‘sorry’ isn’t good enough and it is a case of too little too late for a lot of families.”