A new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine has found that an expensive blood thinner is no more effective or safe than its much cheaper alternative. According to researchers, bivalirudin possesses no observable benefits over heparin despite being nearly 400 times as expensive.
The study involved more than 8,000 patients from 78 different hospitals. Before the new study, 14 others had been conducted on the two blood thinners, but data was unreliable due to varying factors that inspired controversy in the medical field. Researchers have recommended that doctors use the cheaper heparin in most cases.
Blood thinners are often used in patients who undergo heart surgery procedures or who have suffered medical events like heart attack and stroke. However, several blood thinners such as Xarelto have been found to increase risks of additional adverse events.
More than 1,800 cases of Xarelto side effects have been reported to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration alleging that the drug caused injuries. Many patients reported severe complications from the blood thinner, including blood clots and heart attacks. Thousands of patients have filed Xarelto lawsuits alleging that the anticoagulant caused serious injuries.