What is Pradaxa?
Pradaxa is an anticoagulant, or blood thinner, sold by Boehringer Ingelheim. For decades, doctors have prescribed and adjusted anticoagulant dosages based on each patient’s specific health situation and monitoring the blood’s reaction to the prescribed medication. Pradaxa allows doctors to prescribe a twice-daily dosage amount that supposedly works for everyone and does not require blood monitoring. But without the blood monitoring, doctors often are not able to diagnose uncontrolled bleeding until it’s too late.
For more than 50 years, Warfarin was the standard anticoagulant. Warfarin not only has less risk of bleeding but also, importantly, has an antidote to counteract the effects in case of emergency, such as a car accident. Until recently, Pradaxa did not have an antidote and could not be flushed out of the body. If a patient experienced bleeding while on Pradaxa, there was little that could be done to stop it immediately. In many cases the uncontrollable bleeding could be fatal.
What are potential injuries?
Pradaxa is intended to thin the blood and prevent clotting. However, Pradaxa has become associated with serious and life-threatening injuries, including uncontrollable bleeding of the brain and gastrointestinal (GI) system. The bleeding can interrupt the function of major organs and, in some instances, blood pools inside the body. Without a reversal agent, many patients have died.
Pradaxa has numerous other reported side effects, but some of the most dangerous, and potentially fatal, include:
- Brain hemorrhage
- Uncontrollable bleeding
- Reduced platelet levels
- Internal or rectal bleeding
What is the legal status?
Thousands of cases against the manufacturer of Pradaxa have been filed across the country, and many have already settled. The lawsuits will take the approach that neither patients nor doctors were advised of the high level of risk associated with the drug, and that many patients did not understand that there was no antidote. If you or a loved one has experienced the negative effects of Pradaxa, contact Oxner + Permar for a free consultation.