Trasylol: Doctor Claims 22,000 Patients May Have Died In Vain

Dr. Dennis Mangano, a respected doctor and researcher, has stated that approximately 22,000 lives could have been saved if drug maker giant Bayer Pharmaceuticals had pulled Trasylol off the market sooner. Trasylol, a drug used to limit bleeding in heart surgery, was eventually pulled off the market in November 2007 after reports of patient deaths reached the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

60 Minutes interview reveals Bayer cover-up

The popular CBS news show, 60 Minutes, reported that Dr. Mangano studied 5,065 Trasylol patients in 17 countries and found that patients on the drug doubled their risk of kidney failure, heart failure and had a 181 percent increase in the risk of stroke. In fact, Mangano claims that Bayer knew about these risks several years before, had studies of its own that showed similar findings, but did not want to pull the product off the market due to its sales – nearly $1 billion a year.

The 60 Minute’s interview focused on one New York patient who may have died because of Trasylol use. Joe Randone, only 53 years old, went to the hospital for heart surgery. His doctors predicted that his operation fairly routine and only carried a five percent risk. However, Trasylol was used in the operation and afterwards, Randone suffered two heart attacks, as well as renal (kidney) failure due to aprotinin-induced graft thrombosis – a blood clot that was allegedly due to Trasylol use. Unfortunately for Randone and his family, he had to undergo 19 additional surgeries – including having his eyes sewn shut to protect his corneas, amputation of his legs due to poor circulation and removal of his gallbladder – until he finally died several months later.

Bayer may have known about issues as early as the 1980’s

According to 60 Minutes, Bayer may have known about the problems associated with Trasylol for many years. Studies in the 1980’s and 1990’s revealed these problems, but Bayer didn’t seem to care, according to a German scientist who says that he told Bayer about these problems many years before. It wasn’t until Mangone’s 2006 study that people started paying attention and reacting to the drug being pulled from the Canadian, and ironically, German (where Bayer is headquartered) shelves. The FDA had issued warnings on the drug, but didn’t pull it from U.S. shelves until November of 2007. Mangano claims that 22,000 lives could have been saved if Bayer hadn’t put profits before patients. In addition, Dr. William Hiatt, Chairman of the FDA’s advisory panel, told CBS’s Pelley that he would have voted to remove Trasylol from the market had he known about Bayer’s study.

Trasylol was given to an estimated one third of all heart bypass patients in the United States over the 14 years it was on the market from 1993 to 2007. If you or a loved one may have been injured or died due to the use of Trasylol, contact an attorney whose practice focuses in this area of law to discuss your situation. The consultation is free and without obligation. To contact a qualified attorney, please click here.

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