Plavix and Heart Attack Side Effects

Plavix patients may have an increased risk of suffering from life-threatening side effects like heart attack. If you have been affected by the blood thinner Plavix, contact a qualified attorney immediately.

The safety of the blood thinner Plavix has become the subject of significant scrutiny in recent years, due to information suggesting the medication may cause serious side effects in patients. Plavix (clopidogrel) belongs to a class of drugs called thienopyridines, and is a prescription blood thinner used to inhibit blood clotting in patients with peripheral vascular disease, coronary heart disease or cerebrovascular disease. Plavix is currently manufactured by drug makers Bristol-Myers Squibb and Sanofi-Aventis. Plavix garnered FDA approval in 1997, and is commonly used in combination with aspirin to reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack caused by blood clots. Unfortunately, an emerging body of research has drawn a potential connection between the use of the blood thinner Plavix and life-threatening side effects, including heart attack. If you took Plavix and have since suffered from a major side effect, contact a Plavix attorney for legal help.

Heart Attack Symptoms

In order for the heart to function properly, it requires a constant supply of blood and oxygen to keep it pumping. A heart attack occurs when a blockage in the heart's arteries restricts or completely cuts off the blood supply to a portion of the heart, which can cause the heart muscle to become damaged and begin to die. Most heart attacks are caused by a blood clot that blocks one of the coronary arteries, which bring blood and oxygen to the heart. Common symptoms of a heart attack include:
  • Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing or pain in the chest
  • Pain spreading to the neck, shoulders or arms
  • Chest discomfort with lightheadedness, sweating, nausea, or shortness of breath
  • Anxiety, nervousness and/or cold, sweaty skin

Heart Attack Prognosis

How well a patient does after experiencing a heart attack depends on the extent of damage to the heart muscle and heart valves, and where that damage is located. After having a heart attack, the chance of experiencing another one is higher. In addition, if your heart can no longer adequately pump blood to the rest of the body, heart failure may occur. In some cases, abnormal heart rhythms can also occur, which can be life-threatening.

Plavix Side Effect Studies and FDA Warnings

In 2003, the FDA required Plavix makers to update the drug's warning label to include the increased risk of heart attack, stroke, ulcerative colitis, intracranial bleeding and gastrointestinal bleeding among Plavix patients. In 2006, the New England Journal of Medicine published a study in which researchers compared the benefits and risks of taking Plavix in combination with aspirin, compared to taking aspirin alone. According to the report, taking Plavix with aspirin was not significantly more effective than taking aspirin alone in reducing the rate of heart attack, stroke, or death from cardiovascular causes. In fact, despite the widespread belief that taking Plavix in combination with aspirin can reduce the risk of a second heart attack, experts have found that the drug nearly doubles the risk of heart attack, stroke and death in patients no with history of heart disease. In addition, the FDA added a "black box" warning to the Plavix label in 2010, warning patients and physicians that certain Plavix patients are at high risk of treatment failure.

Plavix Attorneys for Heart Attack Side Effects

Plavix has been heavily marketed by drug makers as providing greater cardiovascular benefits than aspirin, while being easier on the stomach. Unfortunately, recent studies have indicated that Plavix patients may actually have an increased risk of suffering from potentially fatal side effects, including heart attack. If you or a loved one has suffered from a serious side effect which you believe to be linked to Plavix, contact a Plavix attorney for legal help. You may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, and pain and suffering, which you can collect by filing a Plavix lawsuit against Bristol-Myers Squibb and Sanofi-Aventis. You are not at fault for any injuries caused by a dangerous pharmaceutical drug. With the help of an experienced Plavix lawyer, victims of potential Plavix side effects can protect their rights and collect the compensation they deserve.

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