The estate of a woman who bled to death is suing pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim for her wrongful death. Gertrude Eubanks died on April 4, 2011 from internal bleeding just days after she started taking Pradaxa, an anticoagulant. The drug, which is supposed to prevent strokes in individuals with atrial fibrillation, was introduced in the US on October 2010 and offered as an alternative to Coumadin (warfarin).
However, Pradaxa, unlike Coumadin, lacks a reversal agent that can be used to stop bleeding problems. This lack of an antidote is reportedly causing a number of these people to die.
The US Food and Drug Administration has now received hundreds of reports about internal bleeding and hemorrhaging. For example, one man suffered a fatal massive brain hemorrhage after a fall accident. He too had been taking Pradaxa. Also earlier this year, the Institute for Safe Medication Practices issued a report confirming at least 505 Pradaxa-related bleeding events Compare that to the 176 bleeding incidents involving Warfarin reported. Federal regulators are now looking into whether Pradaxa is safe for use.
According to the Eubanks estate’s dangerous drug lawsuit, she started taking Pradaxa in March 26, 2011. She began to experience internal bleeding, which led to her death nine days later. During the time she was on the anticoagulant, she experienced serious mental anguish.
Her wrongful death complaint contends that Pradaxa was defectively designed and that the manufacturer should have known that the warnings made available with the drug were insufficient. The inadequate warnings prevented Eubanks and her doctors from knowing the risks involved for her when taking the medication. The lawsuit accuses the defendants of negligence, breach of duty to Eubanks, not doing enough to notify medical professionals and consumers about the risks involved, and failing to take Pradaxa off the market even after all of the reports of serious bleeding side effects.
Other Pradaxa lawsuits are being filed.
Death magnifies Pradaxa hemorrhage concerns, Fox, March 7, 2012
Study: Higher heart attack risk from pradaxa, CBS News, January 11, 2012
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Contact Altman & Altman, LLP and ask to speak with one of our experienced Boston dangerous drug lawyers. You may have a Massachusetts products liability case on your hands.