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When argatroban was studied in clinical trials, some of the most commonly reported side effects included chest pain, minor bleeding in the digestive tract, and shortness of breath. Although not everyone who uses this drug will experience problems, there are some serious reactions that can occur. Notify your healthcare provider right away if you develop unusual bruising, coughing up blood, or nosebleeds.

An Introduction to Argatroban Side Effects

Just like any medicine, argatroban can cause side effects. However, not everyone who receives the medication will have problems. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or are treated easily by you or your healthcare provider.
 
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with argatroban. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list with you.)
 

Common Side Effects of Argatroban

Argatroban has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occurred in a group of people given argatroban were documented and compared to the side effects that occurred in a similar group of people receiving other medications. As a result, it was possible to see what side effects occurred, how often they appeared, and how they compared to the groups receiving other treatment.
 
In clinical studies, the most common argatroban side effects included:
 
  • Chest pain -- in up to 15.2 percent of people
  • Minor bleeding in the digestive tract (gastrointestinal bleeding) -- up to 14.4 percent
  • Allergic reactions -- up to 13.8 percent
  • Blood in the urine or other genital or urinary bleeding -- up to 11.6 percent
  • Low blood pressure (hypotension) -- up to 10.7 percent
  • Shortness of breath -- up to 8.1 percent
  • Back pain -- up to 8 percent
  • Nausea -- up to 7.1 percent
  • Fever -- up to 6.9 percent
  • Vomiting -- up to 6.3 percent
  • Diarrhea -- up to 6.2 percent.
 
Other common argatroban side effects, occurring in 2 percent to 6 percent of people, included but were not limited to:
 
  • Major bleeding
  • Coughing up blood
  • Sepsis (a very dangerous condition caused by the body's reaction to a severe infection)
  • Cardiac arrest
  • An irregular heart rhythm (arrhythmia)
  • Pain
  • Urinary tract infection (UTI), such as a bladder infection
  • Infection
  • Pneumonia
  • Coughing
  • Abnormal kidney function
  • Groin bleeding (after angioplasty)
  • Headache
  • Slow heart rate (bradycardia)
  • Heart attack.
 
Due to the nature of the studies and the serious conditions argatroban is used to treat, it is likely that many of these reported reactions are not true side effects at all.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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