Pradaxa, also referred to as dabigatran etexilate, is a prescription drug manufactured by Boehringer Ingelheim that thins the blood. It is often prescribed to prevent blood clots in patients with atrial fibrillation resulting from a heart valve malfunction.
Blood clots that block the flow of blood in the brain, lungs or heart can be fatal, and so physicians generally prescribe blood-thinning medications such as Pradaxa and Coumadin (aka warfarin) to patients with an increased risk of blood clots. However, blood thinners carry a set of risks, including uncontrolled bleeding. In fact, Pradaxa side effects in patients have been reported such as internal bleeding, strokes and heart attacks, that in some cases have proven to be fatal.
Pradaxa was initially approved for use in the United States in 2011, based on a study of 18,000 patients who compared the effectiveness of Pradaxa compared to warfarin, a blood-thinning medication still commonly used today. At the time of the study, it was estimated that the risks of internal bleeding and other health conditions were lower in patients who used Pradaxa.
Unfortunately, one risk that Pradaxa patients must face is the fact that there is presently no antidote to Pradaxa. While patients who experience uncontrolled bleeding due to other blood thinners may have the option of being treated with other medications to encourage blood clotting and slow down the bleeding, Pradaxa-taking patients have no such option due to the way that the drug works. Internal bleeding caused by Pradaxa is therefore untreatable, which greatly increases the risk that severe bleeding will lead to death. While Pradaxa risk factors include age and kidney function, no Pradaxa patient can completely escape the risks that the drug presents.
Common symptoms of bleeding due to Pradaxa are pink or brown urine, lethargy, bleeding from the gums, coughing up blood, vomiting that resembles blood, unusual bruising, dizziness, joint pain, headaches, and weakness and swelling of the arms, hands, legs, feet, as well as death.
Pharmaceutical companies are held liable in situations where their product causes unexpected harm when used as it is intended to. Individuals in the state of Florida and throughout the country who have developed a serious health condition due to the use of Pradaxa may have grounds to join a Pradaxa class action lawsuit to get monetary compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages. At the Law Offices of Philip DeBerard, Injury Attorney, our team of legal professionals can help clients from all across the country with these cases.
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