San Diego, CA (PRWEB) December 20, 2013
Resource4thePeople announced today that its national network of attorneys will be available over the upcoming holiday season to consumers inquiring about litigation involving allegations that the popular blood-thinner Pradaxa may cause bleeding problems.
The largest group of such lawsuits* has been consolidated before a federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois because they share common allegations that the medication may cause irreversible internal bleeding problems.
“We are proud to announce that our policy of providing free consultations to consumers inquiring about these allegations and their legal options to seek compensation will not be interrupted by the holiday season,” said Resource4thePeople.
"In response to numerous inquiries from consumers who have asked about whether our attorneys will be available over the holidays we are announcing that our 24-hour hotline will be staffed for those who may be seeking legal options about their eligibility to seek compensation."
The inability to reverse the effects of Pradaxa and allegations of bleeding problems are central to the federal lawsuits* from across the country that have been assigned to U.S. District Court Judge David R. Herndon.
According to the latest figures** provided by the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation there are now 1,883 such Pradaxa lawsuits being overseen by the judge.
"This is an increase of nearly 300 such cases from the last reporting period in November and continues the steady progress in numbers that has occurred since the cases were consolidated before Judge Herndon," said Resource4thePeople.
"Because the numbers of inquiries and filings continue to increase we will continue to offer these consultations over the holidays in order to provide the best legal service to consumers affected by this litigation," said Resource4thePeople. "Consumers should be aware that legal time limits may be involved so it is important to contact us as soon as possible to preserve all legal options."
Judge Herndon is overseeing pre-trial evidence gathering and other legal matters in connection with these cases and is empowered to schedule bellwether trials in the future in which lawyers for the plaintiffs and defendants may test the strengths and weaknesses of their cases.
The court file in the multidistrict litigation* includes a summation of the Pradaxa allegations:
“All the actions share common factual questions arising out of allegations that plaintiffs suffered severe bleeding or other injuries as a result of taking the drug Pradaxa (dabigatran etexilate) and that defendants did not adequately warn prescribing physicians of the risks associated with Pradaxa, including the potential for severe or fatal bleeding, and that there is no reversal agent to counteract the Pradaxa’s anticoagulation effects.”
Resource4thePeople also notes an independent, non-profit*** monitoring medical safety on Oct. 17, 2013 posted figures that showed that the FDA received more reports about side effects about Pradaxa than any other drug the FDA monitors.
The Institute for Safe Medical Practices in its QuarterWatch said that 3,292 reports warning of adverse events, including 582 deaths, were filed over Pradaxa (dabigatran) in 2012.
"For a second straight year dabigatran and warfarin are the most frequently named suspect drugs in direct reports to the FDA.," the authors of the report wrote.
"QuarterWatch has reported on the risks of anticoagulants previously and judged them to be one of the most dangerous of all outpatient drug treatments. The same property that allows anticoagulants to reduce the risk of strokes and blood clots elsewhere in the body leads to high risks for hemorrhage and other bleeding. The result is tens of thousands of emergency room visits or hospitalizations each year."
Resource4thePeople also notes that other cases continue to be filed in state courts across the country, including five recent cases**** filed in Illinois where plaintiffs are claiming that relatives either died or suffered serious bleeding problems from the use of Pradaxa.
The Madison-St. Clair Record reported***** Sept. 26, 2013 that "Some of the plaintiffs claim their relatives died within months of taking Pradaxa, while others claim chronic bleeding caused by the drug required them to be given blood transfusions to prevent their deaths."
In another Pradaxa development, the recently published findings of a trial that was conducted to determine whether Pradaxa (dabigatran) is an effective alternative to warfarin in patients with atrial fibrillation was terminated because of a high number of bleeding incidents attributed to Pradaxa.
The results of the study****** were published in the Sept. 1, 2013 edition of the New England Journal of Medicine and involved hundreds of patients with mechanical heart valves who were tested in comparisons of the two popular anticoagulants.
The anticoagulant trial was terminated prematurely after the enrollment of 252 patients because of an excess of thromboembolic and bleeding events among patients in the dabigatran group, according to the published findings.
The researchers reached the following conclusion:
"The use of dabigatran in patients with mechanical heart valves was associated with increased rates of thromboembolic and bleeding complications, as compared with warfarin, thus showing no benefit and an excess risk."
Bloomberg News, in a Dec. 11, 2012 posting, reported******* that Pradaxa “has been linked to more than 500 U.S. deaths over a two-year period.”
Bloomberg also reported that “Concerns about Pradaxa’s safety surfaced soon after U.S. doctors began prescribing it. FDA officials said they received reports of 542 deaths and 3,781 side-effect incidents tied to the drug in 2011."
*IN RE: Pradaxa Product Liability Litigation, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois, MDL No. 2385
**** Case #s 13-L-469, 13-L-470, 13-L-467, 13-L-468, 13-L-466, St. Clair County Circuit Court, Ill.