Arixtra Warnings and Precautions
Specific Arixtra Warnings and PrecautionsSome warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking Arixtra include the following:
- As with all "blood thinners," most of the serious side effects of Arixtra are related to bleeding, especially internal bleeding, which can be fatal. Let your healthcare provider know if you develop any signs of bleeding, such as:
- Easy bruising
- Cuts or scrapes that are slow to stop bleeding
- Black, tarry stools; bright-red blood in the stool; or vomiting of blood (signs of gastrointestinal bleeding)
- Signs of bleeding in the brain, such as vision or speech changes, weakness or numbness in an arm or leg, or a severe headache.
- There have been reports of spinal or epidural hematoma in people who had spinal, epidural, or caudal anesthesia (or spinal punctures) while on anticoagulants like Arixtra. This is a serious problem that can sometimes cause long-term or permanent paralysis. Each case must be evaluated on an individual basis, but you may not be a candidate for these types of anesthesia or procedures if you are on Arixtra.
- Make sure your healthcare provider knows if you have kidney disease, diabetic retinopathy, uncontrolled high blood pressure, current or recent ulcers of the digestive tract, or any obvious bleeding. Extreme caution must be taken in such situations. Extreme caution should also be taken in people with bleeding disorders (that increase the risk of bleeding), bleeding in the brain, or recent brain, spinal, or eye surgery.
- Arixtra may interact with a number of other medications (see Arixtra Drug Interactions for more information).
- Rarely, Arixtra can cause low blood platelets (thrombocytopenia). In many cases, this is mild and causes no other problems. Rarely, though, a severe reaction, similar to heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT), may occur. This dangerous problem can cause excessive clotting, loss of limbs, and even death. It is important to note that Arixtra is not a heparin medication, and many people who have HIT can successfully take Arixtra.
- People with kidney disease and people who weigh less than 110 pounds may be at an increased risk for bleeding due to Arixtra.
- The needle guard of Arixtra prefilled syringes contains dry natural latex rubber, which can cause problems for people with latex allergies.
- It is not known if Arixtra passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Arixtra and Breastfeeding).
- Arixtra is considered a pregnancy Category B medication. This means that it is probably safe for use during pregnancy, although the full risks are currently unknown (see Arixtra and Pregnancy).