Xarelto Receives Mixed Press as 2016 Comes to a Close

Xarelto Receives Mixed Press as 2016 Comes to a Close

Most drugs are subject to varied press coverage over their lifetime. Blood-thinner Xarelto is no exception, as the latest research and legal challenges jockey for headline position as the year draws to a close.

First, the good news…

This week a new analysis of the drug’s impact on blood clots found cancer patients treated with Xarelto required fewer ER visits and spent less on healthcare costs. When compared to patients who received standard treatment options, such as daily injections of alternative medication, all forms of hospitalization were lower for those taking Xarelto. This includes days spent in the hospital, visits to the Emergency Room, and outpatient visits.

When compared to patients who received standard treatment options, such as daily injections of alternative medication, all forms of hospitalization were lower for those taking Xarelto. This includes days spent in the hospital, visits to the Emergency Room, and outpatient visits.

xarelto study

Source: American Society of Hematology (ASH) | Rivaroxaban = Xarelto

On the negative side, a new legal complaint filed in Wisconsin claims that Xarelto inflicted life-threatening injuries on the plaintiff. 

The suit alleges that the patient was prescribed the drug without being properly warned of its dangerous side effects. At the heart of the claim, filed against Xarelto’s creator Janssen Research and Development LLC, is the belief that the drug was excessively praised in advertising. To such an extent, in fact, that the suit accuses Janssen – formerly Johnson and Johnson – of false advertising, fraud, and negligence, among other charges.

There have been numerous Xarelto lawsuits since the drug received FDA approval in 2011. While it has fared better than its predecessor Pradaxa, which was first to the US market in 2010 and had to handle the early usage learning curve, Xarelto has still been dogged by similar concerns. The latest charge continues a long line of complaints against this form of medication and ensures the same question marks will extend into 2017.

For all the controversy, Bayer and Janssen have clearly decided that the negative press and legal battles are worth the fight. Xarelto brought in almost $4.5 billion for its owners last year, making it among the top 20 best-selling drugs.

With a bottom line that healthy it can afford to take some hits, but patients should be aware of previous complaints and ask the right questions about whether or not Xarelto is right for them.

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