Boehringer Ingelheim, a Frankfurt-based pharmaceutical company, has reported more than 250 deaths in connection with its stroke prevention pill Pradaxa. Initially, when the deaths were in the dozens, a company spokesman indicated that the numbers were not surprising given a clinical study that led to Pradaxa’s market approval. However, rapidly increasing reports of Pradaxa deaths have heightened the attention of health regulators worldwide.
Pradaxa has been available to the US market since October of 2010. The anti-clotting pill is designed for stroke prevention and is especially prescribed to elderly patients with atrial fibrillation, a common form of irregular heartbeat. Like other drugs that work by preventing blood clots, Pradaxa brings the risk of internal bleeding. No antidote is available for internal bleeding.
Despite the startling report about Pradaxa, Britain’s watchdog for healthcare cost-effectiveness, NICE, endorsed the drug after receiving additional information from Boehringer. Boehringer stated this week that prior to taking Pradaxa, patients should have kidney checks to rule out the possibility of overdosing. Malfunctioning kidneys let too much Pradaxa stay in the bloodstream and increase the risk of internal bleeding. Boehringer added that doses should be smaller in people ages 75 and older.
Pradaxa’s anti-coagulant rivals include Xarelto, Eliquis and Lixiana. Together, these four drugs compete with warfarin. Warfarin is currently the most popular anti-clotting drug in the US and it’s been on the market since the 1950s. Unlike Pradaxa, Warfarin can be cancelled out with vitamin K if needed. However, this fact makes warfarin difficult to manage on a daily basis. Warfarin’s interaction with salad greens and other common foods means that the dosage isn’t easily controlled.
Drug industry analysts estimate that the global annual market for warfarin and anti-clotting drugs is as high as $20 billion.
Took Pradaxa and suffered from internal bleeding?
If you have taken Pradaxa and suffered from internal bleeding, you may be entitled to collect significant financial compensation. To find out if you have a case, contact our expert Pradaxia side effect lawyers for a free no obligation consultation by completing the form on this page or calling 1-800-905-2751.