The United Kingdom’s National Institute for Health Care and Excellence (NICE) gave the approval to new anticoagulant Eliquis for use in patients treating deep vein thrombosis (DVT). Eliquis is a new challenger to Bayer Pharmaceuticals and Johnson & Johnson’s blood clot drug Xarelto, which has recently come under fire for potentially deadly side effects.
Health care officials are confident in Eliquis because it requires a lower dosage than Xarelto and other anticoagulants, which reduces the risk of internal bleeding and other side effects. Some studies have found Xarelto could increase a patient’s risk of internal hemorrhaging, a condition that is irreversible due to the lack of a an antidote within Xarelto.
Bayer and J&J are expected to face thousands of Xarelto lawsuits alleging that the companies failed to warn patients and doctors of the increased risks of severe complications associated with Xarelto. More than 1,800 adverse Xarelto events have been reported to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, including at least 183 Xarelto deaths.