Who takes Xarelto and who is at risk of being hurt by this medication?

Xarelto Spilling Out of a Prescription BottleXarelto was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2011. Since then people in the United States have been able to take Xarelto with a doctor’s prescription.

FDA Approved Uses for Xarelto​

Currently, Xarelto may be prescribed in the United States to a person who has:

  • Atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve problem. People with atrial fibrillation have hearts that do not beat as expected. This can cause dangerous and potentially life-threatening blood clots to form. Xarelto can reduce the risk of blood clots and strokes for people with atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve issue.
  • Blood clots in the legs or lungs. Blood clots in the veins of the legs, known as deep vein thrombosis, or blood clots in the lungs, known as pulmonary embolisms, may be treated with Xarelto. Additionally, people who continue to be at risk for developing these types of blood clots after six months of treatment may take Xarelto to try to prevent future blood clots from forming.
  • Recent knee or hip surgery. Xarelto can help prevent deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolisms in people who recently had hip or knee replacement surgery.
  • Coronary artery disease or peripheral arterial disease. Xarelto combined with a low dose of aspirin can help reduce the risk of serious heart problems, stroke, or heart attacks in patients with these conditions.

Xarelto is a blood thinner that can prevent dangerous blood clots from forming, but it is not without risks.

Xarelto Users Risk Serious Injuries

As an anticoagulant, Xarelto works by thinning out your blood to prevent clotting. Janssen Pharmaceuticals, the Johnson & Johnson subsidiary that makes Xarelto, advertises Xarelto as “a latest-generation blood thinner” because it specifically targets one blood clotting factor as compared to older generation blood thinners such as Warfarin that impact six different blood clotting factors and interfere with the body’s vitamin K.

However, newer drugs are not synonymous with risk-free drugs. Xarelto creates certain risks for patients, such as:

  • An increased risk of dangerous bleeding. Uncontrollable bleeding is a risk for people taking Xarelto. Brain bleeds and internal bleeding are risks that can result in death. Retinal bleeding is also a risk and can cause permanent vision damage. If you are coughing up blood, if you are dizzy or faint, if you experience vision changes, if you develop any amount of paralysis, if you have a cut that won’t stop bleeding, or if you experience any other signs of a potential bleed then it is important to get emergency medical attention.
  • An increased risk of blood clots once a patient stops taking the medication. The very risk that you were trying to control by taking Xarelto may increase when you stop taking the drug. Do not stop taking Xarelto without speaking to your doctor. Your doctor may want to put you on a different type of blood thinner to prevent a blood clot and monitor you more closely.

Anyone who takes Xarelto may be at risk of suffering from these serious and potentially life-threatening medical complications. These complications may occur during treatment or soon after treatment ends.

What to Do If You Have Been Hurt by Xarelto​

Even though the side effects of Xarelto are now known, that does not mean that your recovery for Xarelto-related injuries will be automatic. Xarelto cases can be difficult for injured people to win. Janssen Pharmaceuticals has had some success at trial on claims brought by people injured by Xarelto or their surviving family members.

Thus, before you pursue a Xarelto claim, it is important to know all of your rights and to understand whether you may truly have a legal case that can result in an award of damages. Our New England Xarelto injury lawyers would be happy to review your potential claim for you, free of charge if you have suffered a Xarelto side effect in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, or New Hampshire. To find out more, or to schedule your free consultation with us, please fill out our online contact form or call us directly.

 

John L. Keefe
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Founding Attorney, Massachusetts Social Security Disability Lawyer