J&J, Bayer Ordered to Pay $29 Million in First Xarelto Loss


Johnson & Johnson and Bayer AG are responsible for a woman’s injuries tied to the blood-thinning drug Xarelto and must pay more than $29 million in damages, jurors concluded in the companies’ first loss at a trial over the medicine.

Lynn Hartman said she took Xarelto, sold by J&J’s Janssen Pharmaceuticals unit, for more than a year before being hospitalized in 2014 with gastrointestinal bleeding she blamed on the drug. A Philadelphia jury on Tuesday ordered J&J and Bayer, which jointly developed the product, to pay $1.8 million in actual damages and $28 million in punitive damages, one of Hartman’s lawyers said after the verdict.

Johnson & Johnson and Bayer won the first three cases to come to trial in federal courts in Louisiana and Mississippi, after juries found the drug was safe and the companies properly warned about Xarelto’s bleeding risks. Plaintiffs had pinned their hopes on winning in state court in Philadelphia, which is known for having plaintiff-friendly juries.

“Xarelto is the worst in class of the new blood thinners,” Michael Weinkowitz, a Philadelphia attorney who represents Hartman, said in an emailed statement. “The serious health complications suffered by thousands of patients could have been avoided if physicians were properly instructed about the risks.”

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