The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
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1351
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Dabigatran Etexilate (Pradaxa) - A New Oral Anticoagulant

The FDA has approved the oral direct thrombin inhibitor dabigatran (da big’ a tran) etexilate (Pradaxa – Boehringer Ingelheim) for prevention of thromboembolic stroke in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation. It has been available in Canada (Pradax) since 2008 for prevention of thromboembolism in patients undergoing knee or hip replacement surgery and was recently approved there for use in atrial fibrillation.

ANTICOAGULATION IN ATRIAL FIBRILLATION — Anticoagulation can reduce the risk of thromboembolic stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation by 60% or more and is more effective than antiplatelet therapy in patients with atrial fibrillation who have had a previous stroke, transient ischemic attack or non-CNS embolus or who have two or more of the following risk factors for stroke: >75 years old, hypertension, diabetes or heart failure.

For many years, the drug of choice for ... more      

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