Marketed by Bristol-Myers Squibb and Sanofi Pharmaceuticals and currently the second most commonly prescribed drug on the U.S. market, Plavix is used to prevent heart attacks and stroke. Also known as a “clopidogrel,” the blood-thinner, Plavix, belongs to a category of drugs called antiplatelets, which are intended to prevent the formation of blood clots within the patient’s arteries. This May when Plavix lost its patent, the Wall Street Journal reported that The U.S. Food and Drug Administration gave numerous drug companies the right to sell their own generic, over-the-counter versions.
Advertised as a way to combat and prevent heart attacks and strokes, Bristol-Myers Squibb recommends supplementing Plavix with aspirin. However, according to a recent study undertaken by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), Plavix offers no further benefits than any other competing antiplatelet medications and, moreover, that its use actually increases the risk of heart attacks, strokes, ulcers, cerebral bleeding, gastrointestinal bleedings, damaged bone marrows, thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura, and death. Most alarming is that the study, which began in 2003 and was examining the effects of a combination of Plavix and aspirin regime versus solely an aspirin regime, had to be suddenly discontinued because the combination of Plavix and aspirin became linked to increases in bleeding and death of test subjects during trial studies.
John A. Jarcho, M.D, of the New England Journal of Medicine was joined by the Harvard Medical School’s Marc A. Pfeffer, M.D., Ph.D., who echoed this holding in concluding that the risks of combining Plavix and aspirin outweigh any potential benefits. Additionally, a 2010 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine concluded that Plavix use in patients who already have a predisposition to poor metabolism increases the risk of death of 14% of those patients.
While the news of Plavix going generic may mean immediate savings for customers, it also translates into the increased risk that even more consumers and patients will be at risk for the dangerous side effects associated with the drug and its combination with the popular drug aspirin.
If you or someone you know has suffered any of the side effects, you may be entitled to compensation. The attorneys at d’Oliveira & Associates are working with some of the leading Plavix lawyers and want you to know that they will work hard to get you the compensation.
For a free legal consultation, call 1-800-992-6878 or visit us at d’Oliveira and Assoicates and fill out our contact form.