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Taking Pradaxa? 4 Questions You Need to Ask Your Doctor


Pradaxa is a pharmaceutical medicine that is used to lessen your risks of stroke and blood clots in patients who are at risk for AFib. Atrial fibrillation causes the heart to beat abnormally and the anticoagulant in Pradaxa helps reduce the risks of clots forming throughout your body. As with any drug, there are numerous pros and cons and patients need to be informed before taking any medication.1. Are there any side effects to taking Pradaxa?

Before you begin to take any medication, you need to have a conversation with your physician and decide if Pradaxa is right for you. Warfarin is typically the drug prescribed for those suffering from a heart rhythm disorder. However, a single fixed dose of Pradaxa taken twice a day can help most patients immediately within the first couple of hours after the first dosage. Research has also shown that Pradaxa can reduce the risk of stroke 35 percent more than those that took Warfarin. However, by December of 2011, a full investigation by the FDA was launched for “serious bleeding events” related to the medication and would start a flood of people acquiring a Pradaxa attorney regarding lawsuits related to these events.

2. Do I have a higher risk for bleeding when taking Pradaxa?

Pradaxa can cause bleeding in patients that are over the age of 75. Your risk may also be higher if you have stomach or intestinal issues in relation to stomach ulcers. Aspirin, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines and blood thinners may also cause a higher incidence of bleeding in patients that take Pradaxa. Physician monitoring is necessary, and you should seek immediate medical attention if you are coughing up blood, your urine is brown or red, and you have unexplained headaches and dizziness.

3. Is Pradaxa safe to take with other medications?

The drug has fewer drug interactions than Warfarin, which can be affected both by your diet and a variety of other pharmaceutical products. Rifampin, aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs can have an impact on Pradaxa, so you need to check with your physician before taking any type of medication. Kidney functioning and blood tests will need to be performed before and during your prescribed treatment of Pradaxa. It’s important to keep the pills in their original container and never crush, chew or open the capsules.

4. Are there are important factors that I need to be aware of when taking Pradaxa?

Since Pradaxa has been proven to be effective in reducing strokes and blood clots in patients far faster than other drugs, you need to make sure you don’t miss a dose. You can take the missed dosage as soon as you remember, if you are under six hours late. Patients should also avoid consuming alcohol and activities that could increase your chances of getting hurt and bleeding. If you need surgery or any type of dental work, let the doctor know ahead of time in case you have to be taken off of the medication during the time leading up to the procedure. Pradaxa can be more costly than other medications, but it’s been proven to increase the longevity in most patients, so the expense is definitely worth it.

As with any prescribed medication, there will always be numerous pros and cons. That’s why it’s important to sit down with your physician and discuss all the aspects of the drug Pradaxa or any other medicine that will be added to the maintenance of your life.   

Having an elderly parent helps freelance writer, Nadine Swayne, offer this article on the importance of consulting with your doctor about medicine education. The attorneys at Doyle Raizner know that understanding prescription drugs and their interactions can be difficult. However, if you or a loved one experience health damage or death due to prescribed medicine, they advise contacting a Pradaxa attorney immediately to discuss your case.

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