Xarelto (rivaroxaban) is a new generation anticoagulant in a class of drugs known as direct thrombin inhibitors. It is a blood thinner used to reduce the risk of blood clots and strokes. Xarelto has also been marketed as being easier to use than Coumadin (warfarin), an older anticoagulant, because it does not require medical monitoring. It was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in July 2011.

Xarelto has reportedly been linked to an increased risk of uncontrollable bleeding. A risk of hemorrhaging exists in many blood thinners, but Warfarin has an antidote that can reduce the risk of uncontrollable hemorrhaging. Xarelto does not have an antidote which means that injuries including minor cuts or internal bleeding can result in uncontrolled bleeding, which can be fatal.

50458-0580-30_791DBCBDA lawsuit filed against Bayer and Janssen (“Defendants”) alleges that Xarelto is linked to fatal and/or severe bleeding events because the patient’s blood does not properly clot, allowing uncontrollable hemorrhaging to occur even from seemingly minor cuts. The lawsuit further alleges that the Defendants did not properly warn patients about the lack of an antidote to Xarelto.

The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) decided to consolidate in Louisiana federal court nearly two dozen suits against Johnson & Johnson unit Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Bayer Corp. over the new blood thinner Xarelto. The 21 actions now filed in the United States Courts against the makers of Xarelto “present a number of individualized factual issues,” the JPML stated. A multidistrict litigation order establishes a single court to hear cases from all over the country. The order notes that the Honorable Eldon E. Fallon will be presiding over the cases.

The transfer order acknowledged many commonalities between cases filed against the makers of the blood thinner Xarelto. Some of these commonalities include, “the adequacy of Xarelto’s warning label with respect to the risk of severe bleeding and other injuries, the results of certain clinical studies, and the alleged need for blood monitoring.”

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