The blood thinner Xarelto, most popular among adults undergoing hip and knee replacement surgeries, can treat patients suffering from an irregular heart rhythm, hypertension, or other valvular heart conditions. And while Xarelto can prevent potentially deadly blood clots, it can also have some potentially dangerous side effects.
And now thousands of lawsuits based on those side effects are being consolidated into one case for pretrial motions. Here's what you need to know about the latest Xarelto lawsuits.
As with all blood thinners, or anticoagulants, Xarelto can increase the risk of internal bleeding and has also been associated with hemorrhaging in the eye. Patients taking Xarelto are more than twice as likely to experience stomach bleeding than those taking another anticoagulant, and at least one patient has died from a blood transfusion to treat Xarelto-related gastrointestinal bleeding. That patient's husband sued the makers of Xarelto, claiming they failed to certify Xarelto was safe and failed to warn patients about the known risks of taking Xarelto.
In certain circumstances, drug companies can be held liable for side effects. Pharmaceutical companies are required to test their products and get FDA approval before releasing them to the public. Once the drug is approved, manufacturers are then required to warn consumers of all known risks and side effects of the drug. Failure to properly design a pharmaceutical drug or warn patients about its side effects can open up a drug company for legal liability.
A report released by the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation shows 6,457 pending lawsuits regarding Xarelto, most of them filed against its manufacturer, Janssen Pharmaceuticals. Forty of these separate lawsuits have now been consolidated into one case in federal court in Louisiana, and will be tried as "bellwether" cases. Scheduled to begin in early 2017, these cases could set the tone for future Xarelto lawsuits.
Pharmaceutical lawsuits can be complicated, so if you've been injured by a drug or suffered serious side effects, talk to an experienced personal injury attorney about your case today -- most are happy to provide a free consultation.