Xarelto Approved for Extended Patent Protection

More than 4,500 plaintiffs have filed lawsuits against Xarelto’s manufacturer over the drug’s side effects, including uncontrollable bleeding and death. Despite these mounting lawsuits, U.S. officials just approved the drug for extended patent protection, so Xarelto will only be available under brand name until 2024. Our team of Xarelto lawyers examines this patent extension and how it affects our Xarelto clients.

Xarelto is a blood thinner (or anticoagulant) very similar to Pradaxa. It is approved for seven conditions, including stroke, deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism.

In a time when U.S. consumers are spending $310 billion per year on prescription drugs, one can’t help but wonder why government officials approve patent extensions for brand-name drugs like Xarelto. Particularly because Xarelto is simply a newer, shinier version of the original blood thinner that has been used for 60 years and is just as safe and effective.

Warfarin is the original blood thinner. It is cheap, effective, and safe. Xarelto and Pradaxa are marketed heavily to patients as “better” drugs, simply because they are easier to use than warfarin. Warfarin requires constant monitoring, as dosing depends completely on each individual patient. Xarelto and Pradaxa, however, come in one-size-fits- all doses, and are easier to manage.

Celebrity Endorsements, Millions on Advertising, No Clinical Benefits

Xarelto’s manufacturer is quick to promote the drug as the new, easier, better, warfarin. And it spends lavishly to promote the drug, hiring celebrities like NASCAR driver Kevin Nealon, golf great Arnold Palmer, and NBA pro Chris Bosh to advertise Xarelto and claim its superiority to warfarin.

There are no studies showing Xarelto is any more effective than warfarin. But warfarin is off patent, and has been for decades. It costs thousands of dollars less than Xarelto. Regardless, it was the third most-advertised drug in 2015.

What the company fails to tell consumers is that there is no known antidote to Xarelto. Any patient taking any type of blood thinner can suffer uncontrollable bleeding from even minor cuts. For warfarin patients, a simple dose of vitamin K will thicken the blood and allow it to clot on its own.

Xarelto and Pradaxa do not have any known antidote to stop uncontrollable bleeding. So if a patient taking Xarelto suffers external or internal bleeding, they are at extreme risk of death from bleeding out. There are more than 4,500 lawsuits currently pending in the U.S. against Xarelto for serious and fatal uncontrollable bleeding.

These Xarelto cases were consolidated in 2014 (MDL Number 2592). The first trials are expected to start in early 2017. These claims are extremely similar to Pradaxa uncontrolled bleeding lawsuits, which ended last year in a mass settlement of $550 million.

Most patients facing life-threatening blood clots don’t have time to research their drug options. They don’t know that warfarin costs a fraction of the cost of Xarelto, is just as effective and in fact is much safer.

Nearly all countries have banned drug advertisements for this very reason. Big Pharma constantly comes out with “new” drugs that are essentially the same as older drugs that have gone off patent and no longer money-makers.

We are currently accepting and representing clients throughout the country who have suffered serious injury or death from Xarelto. If you or someone you love was prescribed Xarelto and had an uncontrollable bleeding event, contact our Xarelto lawyers for a free case review. You may be able to take part in the consolidated litigation against its manufacturer, and be awarded monetary compensation for your medical bills and other expenses.