The federal court overseeing thousands of Xarelto bleeding lawsuits has begun the process of selecting cases for its first bellwether trials, which are scheduled to get underway next year. Those trials could provide valuable insight into how juries might decide many of the other Xarelto claims now centralized in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana.

The Court had earlier indicated that it planned to convene four bellwether trials, starting in February 2017. The first two trials will be heard in the Eastern District of Louisiana, while the third and fourth will be convened in yet-to-named U.S. District Courts in Texas and Mississippi. The cases going before juries are to be selected from a pool of 40 Xarelto lawsuits, 20 of which were to be chosen by the parties and the remaining 20 by the Court.

Xarelto Bellwether Trial Pool

On December 17, 2015, the Court issued an Order directing the parties to each submit 10 bellwether trial candidates by January 11th. Five of those lawsuits must have originated in the Eastern District of Louisiana, one from Mississippi, one from Texas and three cases from other states. Though they are not required to do so, the Order asks that the parties “endeavor” to choose at least one case from each of the following injury categories:

  • Gastrointestinal bleeding cases: 1 involving a patient prescribed Xarelto to prevent stroke, and 1 involving a patient who took the drug to treat pulmonary embolism and/or deep vein thrombosis.
  • Brain bleeding cases: 1 involving a patient prescribed Xarelto to prevent stroke, and 1 involving a patient who took the drug to treat pulmonary embolism and/or deep vein thrombosis.
  • Rectal bleeding cases: 1 involving a patient prescribed Xarelto to prevent stroke, and 1 involving a patient who took the drug to treat pulmonary embolism and/or deep vein thrombosis.

By January 15th, the Court will randomly select 20 additional Xarelto lawsuits for the bellwether trial pool.

Xarelto Allegations

Court records indicate that at least 2,400 Xarelto lawsuits are now pending in the multidistrict litigation underway in Louisiana. All of the plaintiffs involved in the proceeding are alleged to have suffered dangerous episodes of uncontrollable bleeding due to their use of the novel anticoagulant. Among other thing, the lawsuits allege that the drug’s manufacturers wrongly marketed Xarelto as a superior alternative to warfarin, a much older blood thinning medication. Among other things, they point out that internal hemorrhaging associated with warfarin can be stopped via the administration of vitamin K. However, there currently exists no approved antidote to reverse Xarelto bleeding.

If you or a loved one experienced a life-threatening episode of internal bleeding while taking Xarelto, legal help is available. To arrange for a free legal review of your case, please contact Bernstein Liebhard LLP by call 1-877-779-1414.

Published January 12, 2016 by