Sabtu, 05 Februari 2011

Drug Reduces Deaths from Bleeding

A drug that prevents blood clots from breaking down has recently been shown to reduce deaths from uncontrolled bleeding following traumatic injury. In a study of over 20,000 patients, the drug (tranexamic acid, or TXA), reduced deaths due to bleeding after traumatic injury by 15%.

TXA has been used by doctors for some time. Surgeons sometimes administer it before surgery to prevent bleeding in surgical patients, and it has been prescribed for women with particularly heavy menstrual periods to prevent excessive blood loss during menstruation. But this is the first real evidence that the drug is also effective when given to patients after traumatic injury with blood loss. The drug seems to have no significant negative side effects.

Over three million people a year die of traumatic injury. Blood loss is usually a major factor in the patient’s death. This drug might save a lot of lives if it were available everywhere on short notice.

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