On December 5, a Pennsylvania jury awarded a large verdict against the manufacturers of Xarelto, Bayer AG and Johnson & Johnson, in the amount of $27.8 million, over their failure to warn consumers of the high risk of internal bleeding and death. Xarelto is a blockbuster drug which has enriched Bayer Pharmaceutical to the tune of $3.41 billion in 2016 alone.
As more consumers are experiencing unusual and lethal bleeds, however, they are demanding the company put profits ahead of safety in failing to warn consumers of the risks. Astoundingly, Xarelto has been linked to over 370 deaths. They argue Xarelto is a defective and dangerous product that has no counter-agent to stop bleeding.
The Philadelphia verdict was awarded to Lynn Hartman, an Indiana woman. Ms. Hartman took Xarelto to treat her atrial fibrillation. She experienced severe stomach bleeding in 2014 and was hospitalized in June of that year. The verdict consisted of $1.8 million in compensatory damages and $26 million in punitive damages. While compensatory damages compensate a victim for their losses, punitive damages are designed to punish a corporation for bad behavior and to deter future bad behavior.
Xarelto is a blood thinner medication that has been linked to a number of complications, the most serious being a substantial risk of abnormal bleeding, including brain and stomach bleeds. Xarelto, which is still on the market, is prescribed to those with atrial fibrillation, deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, and those who have recently undergone major surgery. It has been described as “worst in class of the new blood thinners” by Michael Weinkowitz, who represented the Indiana couple. Xarelto has been on the market since the FDA approved it in 2011.
While the Pennsylvania verdict represents a major victory for patients and consumers, nearly 19,000 cases are still pending in federal district court in Louisiana before Judge Kallon, who has previously handled other high-profile pharmaceutical litigation, including the Vioxx suit, which settled for nearly $5 billion. There are also approximately 1,400 cases pending in Philadelphia.
If you or a loved one has taken Xarelto and suffered unusual bleeding or experienced abnormal side effects, contact us today for a free consultation. Our Huntsville injury lawyers are currently representing numerous victims who have been injured because of taking Xarelto as well as the families of those who have lost loved ones due to this medication.