What are the Benefits of Pradaxa?


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Table of Contents


I. How does Pradaxa Work?

II. What does Pradaxa Treat?

III. What to Know Before Taking Pradaxa


Pradaxa, also known by its active ingredient dabigatran, is used to prevent harmful blood clots from forming in the body. This is an essential medication for many people because blood clots can happen to anyone and may occur in the heart, lungs, arms, legs, or abdomen.

If a blood clot forms in the bloodstream, it can limit the flow of blood and lead to complications. An immobile blood clot is not always dangerous, but it can travel to the heart or brain if the clot breaks off from the artery and causes a heart attack or stroke. 

If your doctor determines you are at risk for blood clots, they may prescribe a blood thinner like Pradaxa (dabigatran) to lower your chances of a dangerous medical event. Learn more about the benefits and function of Pradaxa below. 

an animation of platelets in the bloodstream

How does Pradaxa Work? 

Pradaxa works differently than other blood thinners. This anticoagulant is a direct thrombin inhibitor, meaning it binds to the thrombin molecule in the blood. Once it binds to thrombin, it blocks its interactions with other clotting factors in the bloodstream, preventing the formation of clots.

Thrombin inhibitors keep the blood flowing smoothly, which can help many people recovering from surgeries, especially hip replacements. Usually, dabigatran is used to prevent deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism.

What does Pradaxa Treat?

DVT occurs when a clot forms in the deep veins in the body and most commonly affects the legs. They typically form if a person does not move for a long time or is confined to a bed after an injury. DVTs can become incredibly serious if the clot breaks off and gets stuck in the lungs. If you are at risk, you may be prescribed Pradaxa.

When a clot causes a blockage in a lung artery, it is known as a pulmonary embolism (PE). When PE happens in the body, it can cause permanent damage to the lungs and low oxygen levels in the blood. Immediate medical help may be necessary to avoid damage to other organs in the body.

Pradaxa is also approved to treat atrial fibrillation. Atrial fibrillation, also known as AFib, is a heart disorder that causes an irregular and rapid heart rate. If you have AFib, you are at an increased risk of experiencing strokes, heart failure, and blood clots. Heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, and family history are major risk factors for AFib. Pradaxa can help prevent complications of AFib, as long as the complications are not caused by an artificial replacement heart valve.

four surgeons performing a surgery  

What to Know Before Taking Pradaxa

Pradaxa is an effective blood thinner if it is taken correctly. Before taking Pradaxa, it is essential to tell your doctor about your medical history. It would be best if you told your doctor about the following:

  • A mechanical heart valve
  • Kidney disease
  • Bleeding problems
  • Blood disorders
  • Liver disease
  • Recent surgery or injury
  • A stroke
  • If you prone to frequent falls or injuries 

When you take blood thinners, you are at a greater risk of experiencing a dangerous bleeding event. Older adults may be more prone to these events while using Pradaxa because they are more likely to experience falls and injuries.

Regardless of your age, it is important to lower your chance of bruising or injury whenever possible. This means you may have to be cautious around sharp objects like razors and nail clippers. You should also avoid contact sports and call your doctor right away if you hit your head or get a deep cut.

If you are unsure whether or not certain activities are safe while taking Pradaxa, consult your healthcare provider to learn more. Reducing your risk of blood clots and bleeding events can significantly improve your life and medical condition.

The content in this article is intended for informational purposes only. This website does not provide medical advice. In all circumstances, you should always seek the advice of your physician and/or other qualified health professionals(s) for drug, medical condition, or treatment advice. The content provided on this website is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.

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