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Iprivask Side Effects

Generic Name: desirudin

Note: This page contains information about the side effects of desirudin. Some of the dosage forms included on this document may not apply to the brand name Iprivask.

For the Consumer

Applies to desirudin: subcutaneous powder for solution

In addition to its needed effects, some unwanted effects may be caused by desirudin (the active ingredient contained in Iprivask). In the event that any of these side effects do occur, they may require medical attention.

Major Side Effects

You should check with your doctor immediately if any of these side effects occur when taking desirudin:

More common:
  • Bleeding gums
  • collection of blood under the skin
  • coughing up blood
  • deep, dark purple bruise
  • difficulty with breathing or swallowing
  • dizziness
  • headache
  • increased menstrual flow or vaginal bleeding
  • itching, pain, redness, or swelling
  • nosebleeds
  • paralysis
  • prolonged bleeding from cuts
  • red or black, tarry stools
  • red or dark brown urine
  • shortness of breath
Less common:
  • Changes in skin color, pain, tenderness, or swelling of the foot or leg
  • cough
  • fast heartbeat
  • hives
  • pale skin
  • puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • skin rash
  • tightness in the chest
  • troubled breathing with exertion
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • wheezing
  • wound secretion
Less common or rare:
  • Blood in the urine
  • blurred vision
  • confusion
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  • fever
  • severe or sudden headache
  • sudden loss of coordination
  • sudden slurring of speech
  • sweating
  • tenderness, pain, swelling, warmth, skin discoloration, and prominent superficial veins over affected area
  • trouble healing
  • vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds

Minor Side Effects

Some of the side effects that can occur with desirudin may not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine during treatment these side effects may go away. Your health care professional may also be able to tell you about ways to reduce or prevent some of these side effects. If any of the following side effects continue, are bothersome or if you have any questions about them, check with your health care professional:

Less common:
  • Nausea
  • vomiting

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to desirudin: subcutaneous powder for injection


Hematologic side effects including hemorrhage (30%) and hematomas are among the most serious and commonly reported side effects. In addition, anemia, thrombosis, thrombophlebitis, decreased hemoglobin, and cerebrovascular disorder have been reported.[Ref]


Other reported side effects have included wound secretion, leg edema, fever, hematuria, dizziness, epistaxis, impaired healing, leg pain and hematemesis.[Ref]


Cardiovascular side effects including hypotension have been rarely reported.[Ref]


Gastrointestinal side effects including nausea and vomiting have been reported rarely.[Ref]


Local side effects including injection site mass have been reported infrequently.[Ref]


Hypersensitivity reactions including at least one case report of acute urticaria following desirudin (the active ingredient contained in Iprivask) administration have been reported.[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Ipravask (desirudin)." Aventis Pharmaceuticals, Swiftwater, PA.

2. Matheson AJ, Goa KL "Desirudin: a review of its use in the management of thrombotic disorders." Drugs 60 (2000): 679-700

3. Bircher AJ, Czendlik CH, Messmer SL, Muller P, Howald H "Acute urticaria caused by subcutaneous recombinant hirudin: evidence for an IgG-mediated hypersensitivity reaction." J Allergy Clin Immunol 98(5 Pt 1) (1996): 994-6

Not all side effects for Iprivask may be reported. You should always consult a doctor or healthcare professional for medical advice. Side effects can be reported to the FDA here.

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.