Dangerous drugs: Xarelto makers fight consolidation of suits

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Dangerous drugs update:  Johnson & Johnson and Bayer, the makers of anticoagulant Xarelto, are opposing the consolidation of lawsuits that have been filed over adverse side effects of the drug. 

Attorneys for Xarelto patients who have suffered serious injuries are expected to ask a panel of federal judges in Charleston, South Carolina, to consolidate 21 lawsuits that have been filed in 10 federal courts and to send the cases to U.S. District Judge David Herndon in East St. Louis, IL.

Attorneys for Johnson & Johnson and Bayer are asking the panel of judges to deny the consolidation request.  If the panel approves the request for consolidation, the drug makers have asked that the consolidated cases be sent to a federal court in New Jersey.  Johnson & Johnson and Bayer are based in New Jersey.

Attorneys for plaintiffs allege that 65 deaths have resulted from bleeding caused by Xarelto.  Furthermore, the plaintiffs claim that the drug makers concealed the fact that there is no antidote for bleeding caused by Xarelto.  Johnson & Johnson spokesperson Kristina Chang maintains that “the benefit-risk profile of Xarelto remains favorable and consistent with the clinical trials.  All anticoagulants carry the riskof bleeding, and the prescribing information for Xarelto has always warned of these risks.”

Xarelto is one of a new class of dangerous drugs – anticoagulants including Pradaxa that have no antidote for excessive bleeding.  In May 2014, Boehrnger Ingelheim, the manufacturer of Pradaxa, agreed to settle some 4,000 lawsuits claiming serious, even fatal, bleeding.  While the German drug manufacturer stated that it stood behind the drug’s safety, the $650 million dollar settlement would avoid the cost of a drawn out litigation.

Xarelto has earned $1.09 billion for it makers in just the first nine months of 2014.  Even as lawsuits began to be filed, Xarelto’s makers sought to expand the drug’s use.  Earlier this year, Johnson & Johnson and Bayer’s attempt to obtain Food and Drug Administration approval for Xarelto to be used in treating acute coronary syndrome was unsuccessful.

The Ohio pharmaceutical injury attorneys at Clark, Perdue & List are experienced in handling claims against pharmaceutical and medical device companies. If you or a loved one have suffered an injury that you believe is related to use of Xarelto, the Ohio Xarelto lawyers at Clark, Perdue & List may be able to help.