People with atrial fibrillation have an increased risk of suffering a stroke. Taking blood thinner drugs can decrease the risk, but some of these medications are not without the risks of internal bleeding. Popular blood-thinning drug Xarelto is prescribed to patients to prevent blood clots and prevent strokes. Most patients do not know that Xarelto may also cause irreversible internal bleeding, often resulting in extended hospitalizations and death.
Xarelto was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in July 2011, for patients with atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart-valve problem. Patients taking anticoagulants, such as Xarelto significantly lower their stroke risk, but they can experience bleeding more easily. Significantly, there is no known antidote (cure) to reverse the type of internal bleeding caused by Xarelto, unlike other blood thinners like Warafin (generic form of Coumadin).
Janssen Pharmaceuticals touted Xarelto as an alternative to other blood thinners with an added benefit: Xarelto, according to the manufacturer, doesn’t require blood monitoring. However, failure to monitor a patient’s blood levels while taking Xarelto can lead to irreversible internal bleeding and result in serious injury, or death. Patients taking Xarelto and other blood thinners should not discontinue use of the drug without consulting their physician. People with atrial fibrillation should discuss the safest and most effective treatments with their doctor as well as the appropriate level of blood monitoring.
Anyone injured by Xarelto bleeding may be eligible to file a lawsuit not only to seek compensation, but also to make the manufacturer take responsibility for putting patients in serious danger. Contact a Xarelto lawyer to preserve your legal rights if it happened to you or a loved one.
Greg Spizer is a partner of Anapol Weiss and co-chairs the firm's Mass Tort Department. He concentrates his practice on pharmaceutical liability, professional malpractice, products liability and other civil and commercial litigation.