New studies compare Pradaxa® to warfarin
A recent article published by Consumer Drug Report, a drug safety information resource, states that researchers are interested in comparing two similar drugs, Pradaxa and warfin. The study was published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
Both Pradaxa and warfarin are considered anticoagulants, or blood thinning medications, for the treatment of atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve problem. Atrial fibrillation is a condition which occurs when part of the heart does not beat the way it should.
About 290 people participated in the study. Half of the group received Pradaxa while the other half received warfarin. Researchers of the University of Kansas Hospital and Medical Center conclude from the study that individuals taking Pradaxa faced a much higher risk for suffering side effects than those on warfarin.
Pradaxa was introduced by Boehringer Ingelheim in October of 2010. It is included in a category of drugs referred to as direct thrombin inhibitors which prevent an enzyme that causes blood cells to coagulate, or clot. The formulation of blood cells causes blood clots which tend to travel through the system. If the blood clots reach the brain, stroke may occur. If the blood clots travel to the lungs, a pulmonary embolism may occur.
Shortly after the Food and Drug Administration approved use of Pradaxa, the health regulating agency quickly received complaints filed by individuals who claim to have experienced adverse side effects.
Some commonly reported side effects of Pradaxa include heart attack, gastrointestinal bleeding, brain hemorrhaging, death, and internal bleeding. The FDA has not recalled Pradaxa from the shelves but is in the process of investigating the large number of reported internal bleeding claims.
Consumer Drug Report is an online information resource providing the latest information about defective medical devices and prescription drugs.