Dabigatran

Dabigatran is a prescribed medicine used for preventing strokes and blood clots in adults who have atrial fibrillation. It comes in the form of a capsule and is taken twice daily. This medicine works by inhibiting clot formation in the body. Some of the side effects of this drug are potentially serious and can include dangerous internal bleeding.

What Is Dabigatran?

Dabigatran etexilate mesylate (Pradaxa®) is a prescription medication approved to reduce the risk of stroke and blood clots in people with atrial fibrillation, a certain type of irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia).
 
Approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in October 2010, dabigatran is a long-awaited "blood thinner" that is easier to dose, requires less monitoring, and is more effective, compared to warfarin (Coumadin®, Jantoven®).
 
(Click What Is Dabigatran Used For? for more information, including possible off-label uses.)
 

Are There Side Effects?

Just like any medicine, dabigatran can cause side effects. Although some side effects of this medication are merely bothersome, some can be very dangerous. Most serious side effects are related to the increased risk of bleeding.
 
In clinical studies, some of the most common side effects reported in people taking this medication (plus aspirin) included but were not limited to:
 
  • Bleeding
  • Gastrointestinal side effects, such as abdominal (stomach) pain or indigestion.
     
(Click Side Effects of Dabigatran to learn more, including potentially serious side effects that you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.)
 
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD; Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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