Taking Xarelto Or Benicar? Beware Of Potentially Deadly Side Effects

For people at risk of strokes and other medical conditions involving blood clots, the only medication available for decades was a pill called warfarin, which was notorious for its risk of serious and potentially deadly side effects. In recent years, a new drug called Xarelto arrived on the marketplace, offering one of the first alternatives to warfarin. Unfortunately, however, the new drug also came with its own set of severe and potentially lethal side effects.

Xarelto Side Effects May Be Deadly

Xarelto is a name-brand version of the drug known as rivaroxaban, which is an anticoagulant used to treat and prevent blood clots. It is often prescribed to patients as a treatment for medical conditions like stroke, deep-vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism or arterial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat). It is also administered to help prevent blood clots following certain surgical procedures, such as knee or hip surgery.

Because the drug acts as a blood thinner, Xarelto users frequently experience a variety of side effects such as increased bruising, nosebleeds and heavier bleeding from minor cuts and scrapes. While those symptoms are not always cause for alarm, sometimes they develop into more serious and potentially dangerous side effects that require immediate medical attention.

Warning signs that something may be seriously wrong after taking Xarelto include:

  • Unusual swelling, pain or discomfort
  • Severe fatigue, headache, fainting or dizziness
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Unusually heavy or prolonged menstrual periods
  • Coughing up blood
  • Vomit that looks like coffee grounds or is bloody
  • Black, bloody or tarry bowel movements

In the most serious cases, Xarelto can cause severe complications like internal bleeding, brain hemorrhages, disruption of normal liver function, accumulation of blood clots in the internal organs. Sometimes, those complications can lead to lifelong disability or even death.

Benicar: Another Popular Drug With A Risk Of Serious Complications

Xarelto is not the only prescription drug on today's marketplace that carries a risk of serious side effects. Another such drug is Benicar, or olmesartan medoxomil, which is used to treat patients with high blood pressure. In some patients, however, the drug can cause severe gastrointestinal problems that may result in long-term complications if left untreated.

The gastrointestinal side effects of Benicar — which may include severe diarrhea, dehydration and weight changes — can closely mimic those caused by celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder that causes the body to have trouble digesting certain proteins known as glutens. As a result, patients suffering negative effects from Benicar may be misdiagnosed as gluten intolerant and continue taking the harmful medication, thus prolonging their suffering and causing additional harm.

Eventually, however, it may be discovered that the patient is not actually suffering from Celiac disease at all, but instead that he or she has a condition known as sprue-like enteropathy, which has been linked to Benicar. Along with malnutrition, dramatic weight loss, chronic diarrhea and stomach pain, other symptoms include:

  • Swelling
  • Chest pain
  • Liver and kidney problems
  • Rash
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Arthritis
  • Hair loss

The risk of serious complications associated with both Xarelto and Benicar are no secret within the medical community. Before prescribing such powerful and potentially dangerous drugs, doctors have a responsibility to make sure it will not pose an undue risk to the patient's health and safety, and to warn patients of any risks they could face by using the drug. Patients who have been harmed by either drug are encouraged to speak with a medical malpractice lawyer to learn about their rights and legal options.