San Diego, CA (PRWEB) April 23, 2014
Resource4thePeople today announced that the number of lawsuits* alleging that the popular blood-thinner Pradaxa may cause bleeding problems has continued to increase in the federal court system.
There are now 2,263 Paradaxa bleeding lawsuits consolidated before a federal judge in Illinois, according to figures from the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation in the latest reporting period ending April 15, 2014.**
"This figure does not account for any other lawsuits that may be pending in state courts or in federal courts that have not joined in this multidistrict litigation in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois," said Resource4thePeople.
"As the number of such cases continues to increase so have the number of consumer inquiries we are receiving from people who may have been affected by these allegations and are seeking information about how to seek compensation."
As a result, said Resource4thePeople, its national network of attorneys will continue to provide free consultations to consumers seeking to determine their eligibility to seek medical expenses, treatment expenses, pain and suffering and other costs.
"However, each case is different and there may be legal time limits involved and consumers are advised to contact us as soon as possible in order to preserve all of their legal options," said Resource4thePeople.
The judge overseeing the multidistrict litigation has set a schedule for a series of bellwether trials in the litigation with the first trial scheduled for September 8, 2014.
U.S. District Judge David R. Herndon also recently issued an order fining the defendants in the case $931,500 for obstructing the efforts of lawyers for Pradaxa plaintiffs to gather evidence to support their allegations.
The defendants are Boehringer Ingelheim International and Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of Pradaxa, according to the court file.
"The wrongs here are egregious in the eyes of the Court," wrote Chief Judge David R. Herndon in his March 13, 2014 order.**
"As hereinbefore provided, there may be more orders yet to come; orders which take actions designed to determine what aspects of the plaintiffs’ case have been prejudiced or even so damaged as to interfere with their ability to prove what they legally have to prove and for the facts of this case to come out. Going forward, based on the findings heretofore, pursuant to the Court’s inherent powers, and to encourage defendants to respect this Court and comply with its orders, the Court fines both defendants, jointly and severally, $931,500.00 ($500.00 per case)."
Resource4thePeople supports the judge's order to ensure that a level playing field is provided plaintiffs who are attempting to question Boehringer Ingelheim officials and review the companies' documents in an effort to support their allegations.
Judge Herndon also found that because the Germany-based companies were not completely cooperating with the attempts of plaintiffs' lawyers to interview company officials that the defendants must pay for an office in Amsterdam, Holland as well as rent and travel expenses for the attorneys.
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 that an independent, non-profit organization**** 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.
*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.