Drug companies are big multinational corporations for the most part, and as such report their profits and losses to Wall Street each quarter. That means these firms are very concerned about making money for their shareholders and their executives. There is no question many medicines they make save a lot of lives. However, when the desire to rake in a profit overshadows the desire to keep people safe and healthy, problems arise.
One of the drugs that makes a lot of money for Bayer AG is known as Xarelto. Xarelto is part of a relatively new class of drugs called new oral anticoagulants (NOACs). Xarelto is one NOAC manufactured by the German pharmaceutical giant and marketed by its partner in the U.S., Johnson & Johnson, but there other competitors. Those include Savaysa, Elliquis, and Pradaxa. These drugs are not only competing with each other, but they are also competing with Warfarin (Coumadin).
A recent news article from Yahoo shows that Xarelto was helping drive company sales this past fiscal quarter.
As our Boston Xarelto injury lawyers can explain, this drug and its other classmate NOACs were designed to treat patients with various serious medical conditions that require the patient to take a drug to prevent clots from forming. These are patients who have a serious medical condition known as atrial fibrillation (Afib), which is classified as in irregular heartbeat not caused by a defective heart valve. If that description sounds familiar to you, it is because you have likely heard many celebrities tell you the same on the Xarelto commercials that air all the time.
The alleged advantage to these drugs is that they are not supposed to require a patient taking them to constantly monitor his or her diet and have frequent blood tests like they would if they were taking Warfarin. While this drug has been around for many years, when taking Warfarin, you must make sure you are not eating foods high in vitamin K, and you must get regular blood tests to make sure you are getting the correct dose. This is an inconvenience to patients, and those who are not taking the correct dose can develop a severe internal bleeding problem that can be fatal if not reversed. Fortunately, there is an antidote, or actually several. Antidotes are commonly referred to as reversal agents. In this case, the patient will need a rapid reversal agent, and doctors in an emergency room can give that patient a dose of Vitamin K, fresh frozen plasma, or Prothrobin complex concentrates.
As it turns out, these NOACs, including Xarelto, are not one dose fits all and patients are experiencing serious internal bleeding disorders including intracranial bleeding. Unlike Coumadin, there is no FDA approved reversal agent and patients have been killed. There is an FDA approved cure Eliquis now, but the FDA rejected approval for one Bayer attempted to market for Xarelto.
However, all this risk to patients is not causing the drug maker to pull Xarelto from the market. In fact, they are selling it as much as possible.
If you are the victim of Xarelto complications Massachusetts, call Jeffrey Glassman Injury Lawyers for a free and confidential appointment — (617) 777-7777.
Stroke drug Xarelto, plastics lift Bayer earnings, April 27, 2017, Yahoo
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