For many years, Vitamin K Anticoagulants were the go to drug for people looking to lower the risk of stroke and heart attack. These blood-thinners, including Coumadin, were often effective at thinning the blood sufficiently to prevent many blood clots from forming. Unfortunately these medications also carried significant side effect risks.
Appearing in the early 2010s, Non Vitamin K Anticoagulants (NOACs) were supposed to offer all the benefits of Coumadin, but without the significant risk profile. These drugs have been marketed under a variety of names, including:
Unfortunately, NOACs have proven not to be the wonder drugs envisioned by the pharmaceutical companies when they were first released. NOACs have been indicated to potentially carry some of the major side effects of their Vitamin K Anticoagulant cousins, including serious bleeding risks.
The risk-reward profile has always been dangerous when prescribing blood thinners. Doctors have grappled with the question of whether or not a person’s risk of stroke was more significant than their risk of bleeding out, particularly with the elevated risk of internal bleeding associated with these drugs.
To properly weigh these risks, doctors have long relied on the prescribing information provided by the pharmaceutical company. Drug manufacturers are required by the FDA to properly label their products to indicate the risk profile. Unfortunately, the makers of some blood thinners (such as the makers of Xarelto) have failed to properly communicate the risk involved.
If you or someone you love has suffered a bleeding issue that you believe may be caused by a blood thinner, please reach out to an experienced attorney. Until manufacturers are held responsible for failing to properly disclose the extent of the risk profile, patients will continue to be harmed by undisclosed side effects of dangerous drugs.