Millions of US patients are prescribed blood thinners every day. The drug Xarelto is fairly new to the market, and was only approved by the FDA in 2011. The most dangerous side effect for people taking Xarelto is uncontrollable bleeding. In October 2014, microbial contamination in samples of Xarelto caused John & Johnson’s Janssen unit to recall 13,500 bottles of the drug.
Janssen claims the contaminated bottles came from its Puerto Rico plant. Xarelto was marketed as superior to decades-old blood thinner Coumadin (warfarin). Unlike Coumadin, the new drug does not require blood tests for dosing and has no dietary restrictions, but does not have an antidote. The promise of effective and convenient medication led doctors to give millions of prescriptions to patients; a number of these patients suffered uncontrollable bleeds. Injuries can include:
- Death caused by uncontrolled bleeding
- Rectal bleeding
- Intestinal bleeding
- Brain hemorrhaging
- Blood clots
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