Two bellwether trials are set to begin in the mass action regarding the pharmaceutical drug Xarelto in the coming week. The first will start next week in the Eastern District of Louisiana.
To date there are more than 16,000 cases filed in the federal MDL which is before Judge Fallon in MDL 2592.
Xarelto is a blood thinner drug prescribed to prevent clots in patients who have an abnormal heart rhythm, who are at risk of stroke, or who have had hip or knee replacement surgery. However, unlike other similar drugs, there does not exist any “reversing agent” for Xarelto. Plaintiffs allege that the drug maker ignored danger signs for years.
Studies began showing as early as 2008 that Xarelto had a higher risk-profile than other blood-thinning drugs. The New England Journal of Medicine published articles in 2008, 2011 and 2012 all of which discussed an increased risk of adverse events.
In 2012, 2,081 serious adverse events concerning the drug were reported to the FDA; 151 of those were deaths, compared to only 56 deaths from warfarin.
In 2013 and 2014, the FDA required that Xarelto begin carrying boxed warnings. Warnings were also issued to medical providers. See here.
The upcoming cases will be watched closely and if large Plaintiff verdicts come about, analysts expect many more lawsuits to follow.