bannerHON
img
HONnews
HONnews
img PATIENT / PARTICULIER img PROFESSIONNEL DE SANTE img WEBMESTRE img
img
 
img
HONcode sites
Khresmoi - new !
HONselect
News
Conferences
Images

Themes:
A B C D E F G H I
J K L M N O P Q
R S T U V W X Y Z
Browse archive:
2017: O S A J J M A M F J
2016: D N O

 
  Other news for:
Aging
Hematologic Diseases
Brain
 Resources from HONselect
Study Tracks Bleeding Risk From Common Blood Thinners
Research looked specifically at bleeds inside the skull and near the brain

By Robert Preidt

TUESDAY, Feb. 28, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Blood thinners can help prevent dangerous clots, but they also come with risks for excess bleeding.

Now, new research shows that use of the medications does boost the odds of "subdural hematomas" -- bleeds occurring within the skull and near the brain. And some blood thinners carry higher risk than others.

The Danish research team stressed that the results don't mean patients who need blood thinners should avoid them altogether -- just that their data adds to decisions around their use.

"The present data add one more piece of evidence to the complex risk-benefit equation of [blood thinner] use," wrote a team led by Dr. David Gaist, of Odense University Hospital and the University of Southern Denmark.

Despite the bleeding risk, "it is known that these drugs result in net benefits overall in patients with clear therapeutic indications," the study authors added.

In the study, Gaist's team tracked data on more than 10,000 Danish patients, aged 20 to 89, who were diagnosed with a first-ever subdural hematoma between 2000 and 2015.

The investigators then compared that group to more than 400,000 people in the general population.

Among the patients with the bleeds, 47 percent were taking anti-clotting medications. These included low-dose aspirin; another class of drugs known as vitamin K antagonists (which includes Coumadin/warfarin); clopidogrel (Plavix); or other blood-thinning medications.

Low-dose aspirin was associated with a small risk of the subdural hematoma bleed; use of clopidogrel plus a second blood-thinning pill was associated with a moderate risk; and use of a vitamin K antagonist (VKA), such as warfarin, carried a higher risk, the researchers said.

With the exception of low-dose aspirin (either alone or combined with the blood-thinner dipyridamole), concurrent use of more than one anti-clotting drug was related to substantially higher subdural hematoma risk, the study found.

The risk was particularly high among patients taking a combined treatment of a VKA (such as warfarin) plus a second drug such as low-dose aspirin or clopidogrel.

Finally, the Danish team found that the use of blood thinners rose in the general population in Denmark from 2000 to 2015 -- as did the rate of subdural hematomas. The largest increase in subdural hematoma rates occurred in patients older than 75, the findings showed.

As director of the neurointensive care unit at Winthrop-University Hospital in Mineola, N.Y., Dr. Rajanandini Muralidharan often works with patients who need blood thinners.

Reviewing the new study, she agreed that the use of drugs such as Coumadin/warfarin "should be carefully considered in the elderly," and if they are used, this should be done only under stringent controls.

Newer (but more expensive) blood thinners -- drugs such as Pradaxa, Xarelto, and Eliquis -- "are an alternative option, given their lower risk of intracranial bleeding," Muralidharan said. However, in rare cases these medicines can also cause dangerous bleeding episodes, she noted, and as yet there are few approved drugs out there to help reverse these events.

The study was published Feb. 28 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

More information

The American Heart Association has more on anti-clotting drugs.

SOURCES: Rajanandini Muralidharan, M.D., director, neurointensive care unit, Winthrop-University Hospital, Mineola, N.Y.; Journal of the American Medical Association, news release, Feb. 28, 2017

Copyright © 2017 HealthDay. All rights reserved. URL:http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=720107

Resources from HONselect: HONselect is the HON's medical search engine. It retrieves scientific articles, images, conferences and web sites on the selected subject.
Risk
Blood
Hemorrhage
Specialty Chemicals and Products
Hematoma, Subdural
Hematoma
Warfarin
Brain
Association
Aspirin
The list of medical terms above are retrieved automatically from the article.

Disclaimer: The text presented on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It is for your information only and may not represent your true individual medical situation. Do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare professional.
Be advised that HealthDay articles are derived from various sources and may not reflect your own country regulations. The Health On the Net Foundation does not endorse opinions, products, or services that may appear in HealthDay articles.


Home img About us img MediaCorner img HON newsletter img Site map img Ethical policies img Contact