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Spinal and Epidural Blood Clots

Xarelto (Rivaroxaban) Side Effects

Xarelto (rivaroxaban) is an anticoagulant, and as such it is meant to inhibit the clotting of the blood. One of the side effects of this prescription drug, however, is spinal or epidural hematoma (blood clots). In the Xarelto medication guide, these clots are discussed under the section titled "What is the most important information I should know about Xarelto?" The medication guide advises readers that patients who undergo spinal or epidural anesthesia or spinal puncture procedures may be at risk of long-term or permanent paralysis caused by a blood clot that forms in the area.

Clotting is an essential function of healthy blood. If internal or external bleeding is to stop, the blood must clot. In some situations, however, clots may form when they do not need to. Hematomas, or solid swellings of clotted blood, can cause serious problems. They may prevent blood from flowing as it should and can lead to strokes, pulmonary embolism and, when they occur in the spinal or epidural area, paralysis.

Spinal and epidural blood clots are rare occurrences but may have serious consequences. When a clot forms in the spinal cord or epidural area (the space between the outer membrane covering the spinal cord and the overlying bones of the spine), this may stop or interrupt the transmission of nerve impulses and information to and from the brain and the rest of the body. The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves that carries commands to and information from the brain and the body. If a blood clot forms in the spinal or epidural area, this may result in temporary or permanent paralysis.

Paralysis caused by a spinal or epidural blood clot may mean that the patient will lose all feeling and muscle control in the area. Urinary incontinence, loss of sexual function and breathing difficulties may also be associated with paralysis.

Patients at an Increased Risk of Spinal Hematoma

Certain patients who take Xarelto may be at an increased risk of spinal hematomas. You may be at risk of developing blood clots in the spinal or epidural area if you:

  • Have an epidural catheter placed in your back to administer medicine or anesthesia.
  • Take any type of anticoagulant medications.
  • Take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
  • Have received numerous spinal or epidural punctures.
  • Have a history of difficult spinal or epidural punctures.
  • Have undergone spinal surgery in the past.
  • Have a history of spinal problems.

If any of the above describe your situation, it is important to inform your doctor so he or she can determine whether Xarelto is the right medication for you. With any prescription drug, your doctor will need to consider the risks and benefits to decide whether the benefits outweigh any potential side effects you may be at risk of experiencing.

Free Case Review with a Xarelto Attorney

Interested in learning more? Your initial consultation with a legal professional at Napoli Bern Ripka Shkolnik, LLP is free and confidential. We handle Xarelto lawsuits on a contingent fee basis, meaning our clients pay no legal fees unless we negotiate a settlement or win a jury award on their behalf. Because we have extensive experience in the area of pharmaceutical litigation and have the resources to build strong cases for our clients, we are confident in our ability to hold at-fault pharmaceutical companies accountable. For more information and insight regarding a case involving spinal or epidural blood clots, contact a Xarelto lawyer at NBRS. We represent patients across the country who have suffered adverse events from this anticoagulant.