Dabigatran (By mouth)

Introduction

Dabigatran Etexilate (da-bye-GAT-ran e-TEX-i-late)

Prevents stroke and blood clots in patients who have atrial fibrillation. This medicine is an anticoagulant (blood thinner).

Brand Name(s)

Pradaxa

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

Do not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to dabigatran, or if you have active bleeding.

How to Use This Medicine

Capsule

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • Swallow the capsules whole. Do not crush, break, or chew them.
  • This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. Ask your pharmacist for the Medication Guide if you do not have one.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.If you have fewer than 6 hours before your next scheduled dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep this medicine in the original container. Do not store this medicine in pill boxes or organizers. Open only 1 bottle of this medicine at a time.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.Use each bottle of this medicine within 4 months after it is opened.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using dronedarone (Multaq®), ketoconazole (Nizoral®), rifampin (Rifadin®, Rimactane®), a blood thinner (such as clopidogrel, heparin, prasugrel, warfarin, Coumadin®, Effient®, Jantoven®, Plavix®), or an NSAID pain or arthritis medicine (such as aspirin, diclofenac, ibuprofen, naproxen, Advil®, Aleve®, Celebrex®, Voltaren®).

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease, a prosthetic heart valve, or a history of bleeding problems.
  • You might bleed and bruise more easily while you are using this medicine. Stay away from rough sports or other situations where you could be bruised, cut, or injured. Brush and floss your teeth gently. Be careful when you use sharp objects, including razors and fingernail clippers. Blow your nose gently, and do not pick your nose.
  • Tell your doctor right away if you have any unusual bruising or bleeding, including heavy menstrual periods, frequent nosebleeds, or black or bloody urine or stools.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You might have a higher risk of stroke for a short time right after you stop using this medicine.
  • Tell your doctor right away if you have stomach pain or upset, nausea, heartburn, or indigestion while you are taking this medicine.
  • Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. You may need to stop using this medicine several days before having surgery or medical tests.
  • Your doctor will need to check your blood at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Coughing up or vomiting blood or material that looks like coffee grounds
  • Joint pain or swelling
  • Lightheadedness, dizziness, or headache
  • Red or black, tarry stools
  • Red, brown, or pink urine
  • Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Stomach pain, nausea, heartburn, indigestion

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013

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This page was last updated: June 18, 2013

         
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