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Posted 4 Nov 2010 by Drugs.com
WEDNESDAY, Nov. 3 – A drug approved to help staunch bleeding in people with hemophilia raises the risk of heart attacks and stroke when it's used to stop life-threatening bleeding due to other conditions, such as trauma or surgery, a new study finds. Despite the nearly twofold rise in risk of dangerous clots that form inside blood vessels and cause heart attacks and stroke in those without hemophilia, researchers said doctors should use the information to carefully weigh the risks and benefits of using the drug, called recombinant activated factor VII (rFVIIa), for any "off-label" use. "If you are a physician confronted with a patient with excessive blood loss, and you have done everything you can and this patient is almost dying because of the bleeding, it's quite acceptable to give the drug even if it's associated with a risk of thrombosis [clotting]," said study author Dr. Marcel ... Read more