Plavix Litigation Centralized in New Jersey State Court

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By: Staff Writers | Published: August 3rd, 2011

All Plavix lawsuits filed in New Jersey state courts have been centralized before one judge for pretrial proceedings, but the cases will not be given a mass tort designation. 

According to an order issued last month by the Supreme Court of New Jersey, all lawsuits filed throughout the state involving the blockbuster blood thinner Plavix will be transferred to Superior Court Judge Jessica R. Mayer in Middlesex for centralized case management.

All of the Plavix suits allege that the drug makers, Bristol Myers Squibb Co. and Sanofi-Aventis, failed to adequately research their medication or warn about the risk of Plavix side effects, which could increase the risk of serious and potentially life-threatening injuries.

In a motion filed in April 2011, the drug makers requested mass tort designation for the Plavix litigation, which would have consolidated pretrial discovery and motions. However, the Court opted to simply have the cases centralized before Judge Mayer, without mass tort treatment. This is still expected to reduce the chance of conflicting motions and rulings that could occur if the cases were being handled by a number of different judges throughout the state.

At the time the Bristol Myers Squibb and Sanofi-Aventis filed their request, the drug makers indicated that more than 40 people had filed a Plavix lawsuit in courts throughout the United States, including at least five in Atlantic County, New Jersey. However, Plavix lawyers investigating claims for individuals who have suffered an injury have suggested that hundreds, or even thousands, of cases are likely to be filed in New Jersey state court, where Sanofi-Aventis is headquartered and Bristol Myers Squibb has five facilities.

According to an initial order issued by Judge Mayer, the first case management conference will be held August 16, at which time attorneys involved in the litigation are expected to bring a list of all cases pending in state or federal courts, indicating the status of discovery and any potential Plavix settlement discussions that have occurred to date.

Plavix (clopidogrel) is a blood thinner that prevents blood platelets from sticking together to form clots. It is often prescribed to prevent heart attacks, strokes and blood clotting when drug coated stents are used in patients with arteriosclerosis and in other at-risk patients. It is a blockbuster medication, generating more than $6.5 billion in U.S. sales for Bristol Myers Squibb Co. and Sanofi-Aventis in 2010.

Many of the complaints filed so far allege that the makers of Plavix promoted promoted the expensive medication as a safer alternative to aspirin, although it may actually provide no benefit over taking a four-cent-a-day aspirin. Plaintiffs allege that they suffered injuries as a result of their unnecessary use of Plavix, such as gastrointestinal bleeding, severe ulcers, heart attacks, strokes and a rare blood disorder known as TTP, or thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpora.

Plaintiffs say that the two companies repeatedly overstated the safety and effectiveness of Plavix, and point out that the companies were repeatedly cited by the FDA for illegal, off-label promotions and for ads and campaigns that touted its benefits over aspirin and how safe it was for the stomach; both claims that the FDA said were unproven, and that several scientific studies brought into doubt.

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There Are 13 Comments So Far • (Add Your Comments)

  1. after taking this med after a heart attack for 1 year i have nose bleeds and throwing up blood the dr said thats normal when taking plavix and they didnt say this a year ago why????????

  2. if i were you i would stop taking plavix.i took it for 8 months before having 4 intestinal bleeds 43 pints of blood 32 days in the hospital,was in a coma for 7 days and lost 72 pounds.i am one of the 40.

  3. It has been a long time but i had mini tia’s strokes and was put on Plavix for several years/ Then all at once got dizzy and was rushed to the hospital. I had an upp gi bleed and had to have 2 transfusions and liked to have died. I hope to hear this case soon.

  4. i meant to add, the hospital told me it was caused from the Plavix and was taken off of it

  5. I took this medication since August of 2005 after having the LAD stented. I had significant bruising, just slightly bumping sonmething would leave half an appendage bruised black and blue.
    In November 2008, I suffered a heart attack. I took the Aspirin/Plavix regime since my first stent in 2005.
    My current cardiologist just informed me that I should never have been put on it as a maintainence dose from day one! The drug was aimed at preventing clots after stenting and only has a maximum effectiveness of 6 months, I had been taking it over 3 years!
    I now have 3 stents which in themselves are controversial as well. My current cardiologist informed me that the drug eluded stents were over rated as well. He said it was very common for him to see patients with drug eluded stents reoccluding!
    These drug companies will tell you anything for a buck! Now they’ll go to court, pay a few million in compensation and fines but keep in mind………………they made and continue to make…………BILLIONS!!
    Who would even give this a second thought with those odds in your favor???
    I have retained a prominant law firm associated with these cases but have had no information on my case other than i am protected from statues of limitations and that these cases are still under review for litigation with the courts! So far, everything has been pointed in our favor but of course that’s always subject to change. Just keep a positive outlook and that justice will be served…………FAIRLY!!!

  6. I hope my mother get her settlement before it too late for her to use it.

  7. I am wondering if anyone has heard at all what is going on with our class action suits? They are def not keeping me updated

  8. finally after all these years of being on a shelf in a trenton new jersey court room. lots of talking but no action – all of a sudden it feels like somebody has a rototiller moving the dirt. lets see what’ll happen, ok?

  9. How high can a point system go for injuries, my mom had severe ulcers, surgery twice, stroke, and hemorraging and eventually died 2 weeks in hospital.

  10. I suffered a brain anuresym and stroke in 2011 still taking plavix not knowing this medication was the cause.after I rceive right vessel brain surgery and ostentatious wad placed in vessell and taken off plavix I started light bleeding inside october 2011 off and on coming from private area. Not being pm’s.

  11. well this is the beginning of 2013 and i am wondering if anyone has heard what is going on the our plavix cases and if so when??

  12. its the 7th month in 2013 and have not heard anything….
    can someone update us on this case??????????????

  13. I lost my mother she died on 02/03/2012 because she fell asleep on our couch and rolled off it. it was less than a foot and she got a brain bleed from this within minutes and by the time they flew her to the hospital it was to late, the surgeon met my father and I at the main hospital door and told us there was no hope now if he did surgery she would bleed out before she got off the table because of the plavix but than again we would not bet here if she was not on the plavix they could operate but if she again was not on the plavix she would not have gotten a brain bleed from such a short fall. and this was a very strong woman that survived 2 kidney transplants, cancer,and a 2 story fall down a flight of steps and I could go on with the things shr survived through, but to loose her because of a fall off a couch is just not right. and my father is not taking iit well they where married for 51 years.

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