Argatroban

Pronunciation

Generic Name: argatroban (ar-GAT-roe-ban)
Brand Name: Generic only. No brands available.

Argatroban is used for:

Thinning the blood to prevent or treat blood clots in patients who have low platelet levels (thrombocytopenia) due to heparin use, or in patients undergoing a certain procedure (percutaneous coronary intervention [PCI]) who have or are at risk for low platelet levels due to heparin use. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Argatroban is a thrombin inhibitor. It works by blocking the action of thrombin, which prevents blood clots from forming.

Do NOT use argatroban if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in argatroban
  • you have severe bleeding
  • you are currently taking heparin

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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Before using argatroban:

Some medical conditions may interact with argatroban. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have a blood disorder, a stomach or bowel problem (eg, ulcers, lesions, bleeding), a bleeding disorder, low platelet counts (thrombocytopenia), severe high blood pressure, or liver problems
  • if you have recently had major surgery (especially those involving the brain, spinal cord, or eye), lumbar or arterial puncture, or anesthesia in your spine

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with argatroban. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Anticoagulants (eg, heparin, warfarin), antiplatelet medicines (eg, cilostazol), or thrombolytics (eg, alteplase) because the risk of bleeding may be increased

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if argatroban may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use argatroban:

Use argatroban as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Argatroban is usually given as an injection at your doctor's office, hospital, or clinic. If you will be using argatroban at home, a health care provider will teach you how to use it. Be sure you understand how to use argatroban. Follow the procedures you are taught when you use a dose. Contact your health care provider if you have any questions.
  • Do not use argatroban if it contains particles or is discolored, or if the vial is cracked or damaged in any way.
  • Keep this product, as well as syringes and needles, out of the reach of children and away from pets. Do not reuse needles, syringes, or other materials. Ask your health care provider how to dispose of these materials after use. Follow all local rules for disposal.
  • If you miss a dose of argatroban, contact your doctor immediately.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use argatroban.

Important safety information:

  • Argatroban may reduce the number of clot-forming cells (platelets) in your blood. Avoid activities that may cause bruising or injury. Tell your doctor if you have unusual bruising or bleeding. Tell your doctor if you have dark, tarry, or bloody stools.
  • Tell your doctor if you have a fall or crash and hit your head, even if you feel fine.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take argatroban before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • Lab tests, including blood cell counts, blood pressure, or blood clotting tests, may be performed while you use argatroban. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using argatroban while you are pregnant. It is not known if argatroban is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking argatroban.

Possible side effects of argatroban:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Back pain; diarrhea; headache; minor bleeding at the injection site; nausea; vomiting.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; flushing; coughing; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); chest pain or pressure; confusion; fainting; fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat; fever; one-sided weakness; pain (especially in the pelvis or legs); severe or persistent dizziness or light-headedness; shortness of breath; slurred speech; sudden, severe headache; symptoms of bleeding (eg, black, tarry, or bloody stools; blood in the urine; coughing up blood; severe or persistent stomach pain; vomiting blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds; unusual bleeding or bruising; unusual vaginal bleeding); vision problems.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.

Proper storage of argatroban:

Argatroban is usually handled and stored by a health care provider. If you are using argatroban at home, store argatroban as directed by your pharmacist or health care provider.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about argatroban, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Argatroban is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take argatroban or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about argatroban. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to argatroban. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using argatroban.

Issue Date: September 3, 2014
Database Edition 14.3.1.003
Copyright © 2014 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

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