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WSNS 2014 Annual Meeting

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October 18, 2014
Seattle Conference Center
Eighth and Pike, Seattle, WA
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Pradaxa (dabigatran): Drug Safety Communication - Lower Risk for Stroke and Death, but Higher Risk for GI Bleeding Compared to Warfarin

AUDIENCE: Cardiology, Patient, Pulmonology, Internal Medicine, Orthopedics, Neurology
ISSUE: The FDA recently completed a new study in Medicare patients comparing Pradaxa to warfarin, for risk of ischemic or clot-related stroke, bleeding in the brain, major gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding, myocardial infarction (MI), and death. The new study included information from more than 134,000 Medicare patients, 65 years or older, and found that among new users of blood-thinning drugs, Pradaxa was associated with a lower risk of clot-related strokes, bleeding in the brain, and death, than warfarin. The study also found an increased risk of major gastrointestinal bleeding with use of Pradaxa as compared to warfarin. The MI risk was similar for the two drugs.

Importantly, the new study is based on a much larger and older patient population than those used in FDA's earlier review of post-market data, and employed a more sophisticated analytical method to capture and analyze the events of concern. This study's findings, except with regard to MI, are consistent with the clinical trial results that provided the basis for Pradaxa's approval. As a result of these latest findings, the FDA still considers Pradaxa to have a favorable benefit to risk profile and have made no changes to the current label or recommendations for use.

BACKGROUND: Pradaxa and warfarin are used to reduce the risk of stroke and blood clots in patients with a common type of abnormal heart rhythm called non-valvular atrial fibrillation (AF).

RECOMMENDATION: Patients should not stop taking Pradaxa (or warfarin) without first talking with their health care professionals. Stopping the use of blood-thinning medications such as Pradaxa and warfarin can increase the risk of stroke and lead to permanent disability and death. Health care professionals who prescribe Pradaxa should continue to follow the dosing recommendations in the drug label.

Healthcare professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:
• Complete and submit the report Online: www.fda.gov/MedWatch/report.htm
• Download form or call 1-800-332-1088 to request a reporting form, then complete and return to the address on the pre-addressed form, or submit by fax to 1-800-FDA-0178

Read the MedWatch safety alert, including links to the Press Release and Class I Recall notice, here. (Posted 05/14/14)

 

WA Contingent at AAN Day on Capitol Hill
WA Contingent at AAN Day on Capitol Hill

(From left): Swati Vora, MD, Tacoma; Dale Overfield, MD, Tacoma; Maureen Callaghan,
MD, Olympia; John Henson, MD, Mercer Island; and Lily Jung Henson, MD, Mercer Island

 
More Info

What is a Neurologist?

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A neurologist is a medical doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating, and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system. MORE
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Neurologists are principal care providers, consultants to other doctors, or both. When a person has a neurologic disorder that requires frequent care, a neurologist is often the principal care provider. MORE
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Common neurologic disorders include the following: MORE
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  • http://washingtonneurology.org/2011meeting/handouts/uuindex.asp