Drug Maker Supports Pradaxa Lawsuit Consolidation
Boehringer Ingelheim has responded to a plaintiffs’ request to centralize all Pradaxa lawsuits, indicating that the pharmaceutical manufacturer is in support of consolidating all pretrial litigation before one judge.
A motion calling for the centralization of all federal Pradaxa lawsuits in U.S. courts was filed with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) last month.
At least 21 federal Pradaxa lawsuits have been filed in U.S. District Courts across the country. All of these suits are based on similar claims that Boehringer Ingelheim did not perform adequate research before releasing this anticoagulant, did not sufficiently warn of the risk of severe or fatal internal bleeding in Pradaxa patients, and that they did not provide adequate information about the lack of a reversal agent to remedy Pradaxa internal bleeding.
Introduced in October 2012, Pradaxa (dabigatran) is a blood thinner that is used to prevent strokes and blood clots in patients with atrial fibrillation. Pradaxa has been marketed as a superior alternative to Coumadin (warfarin), an older anticoagulant that requires heavy patient monitoring. However, while both drugs may lead to internal bleeding, warfarin bleeds can be stopped with a dose of Vitamin K. There is no such reversal agent for Pradaxa internal bleeding.
In the first year Pradaxa was available in the United States, the FDA received more reports of Pradaxa bleeding problems than it received in association with any other drug.
In a report issued in May by the Institute for Safe Medication Practices (ISMP), it was disclosed that the FDA received at least 2,367 reports of hemorrhage and 542 Pradaxa patient deaths in 2011. Warfarin was only linked to 1,106 adverse event reports and 72 patient deaths.
Plaintiff Vera Lee Sellers filed the original motion to consolidate federal Pradaxa lawsuits on May 30, requesting that the cases be transferred to the Southern District of Illinois under U.S. District Judge David R. Herndon. This is the same judge who most recently presided over Yaz and Yasmin birth control pill litigation.
Boehringer Ingelheim responded on June 21, stating that the drug maker supports the consolidation of all federal cases before one judge to reduce duplicative discovery, eliminate conflicting pretrial rulings, and to make the proceedings more convenient for all parties involved. However, the Boehringer Ingelheim does not support the location suggested by Sellers, calling for the cases to be centralized in the District of Connecticut. This is where the company’s corporate headquarters are based and it is also where relevant documents and key witnesses are located.
Oral arguments on the formation of a Pradaxa multidistrict litigation (MDL) will be heard on July 26 at the Carl B. Stokes U.S. Courthouse in Cleveland, Ohio.
Contact a Pradaxa Lawyer
If you or someone you love has suffered injury or death as a result of Pradaxa side effects, you may be entitled to compensation in a dangerous drug lawsuit. To learn more about your rights, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer today.