When we are given a prescription for a serious condition by our doctors, we assume that the doctor knows best and would not prescribe a dangerous medication. Unfortunately, dangerous medications are often approved with little testing by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and doctors can be influenced by big pharma to prescribe a certain medication, despite the lack of studies on it.
The latest controversial drug is Pradaxa, which is an anticoagulant used to treat atrial fibrillation, a condition that often affects elderly patients. Pradaxa is similar to Warfarin. Both drugs carry a similar risk of bleeding, but patients who take Pradaxa do not have to undergo the frequent blood tests required for Warfarin.
A major difference between Pradaxa and Warfarin is that unlike Warfarin, Pradaxa has no known antidote, so if a patient on Pradaxa experiences bleeding, his doctor can do little to help stop the bleeding. Recent reports suggest that elderly patients who take Pradaxa and suffer minor falls have an increased risk of experiencing a serious bleeding event.
Since its introduction on the market in 2010, Pradaxa has caused an estimated 260 deaths worldwide due to serious bleeding events. Regulators knew that Pradaxa had no known antidote when they approved the drug, and the FDA continues to allow the drug to be sold, despite incoming reports of serious bleeding events.
Emergency room doctors and surgeons are especially worried about Pradaxa’s dangerous side effects. “We have noted on multiple occasions patients who have ‘bleeding out’ from Pradaxa and our hands are tied. They’re bleeding out all over and there’s absolutely nothing we can do about it…I’m helpless and hopeless when it comes into my emergency room,” says Dr. Bryan Cotton, a trauma surgeon at Houston’s Memorial Hermann Hospital.
The FDA has not said when it will make a decision regarding the safety of Pradaxa, but diligent trial lawyers across the United States are filing lawsuits to hold Pradaxa’s manufacturer accountable for its dangerous drug. Go to www.vanweylaw.com for the latest news on Pradaxa bleeding events and upcoming Pradaxa lawsuits.