Risk of death may be higher with drug commonly used during cardiac surgery

Dec 02, 2008

The risks of death are probably higher with aprotinin, a drug commonly used to control blood loss and transfusions during cardiac surgery, compared with lysine analogues, according to a study http://www.cmaj.ca//cgi/rapidpdf/cmaj.081109 to be published in the January 20th issue of CMAJ.

On December 3, a Health Canada expert advisory panel will meet to decide on aprotinin use. The study is being early released in advance of the meeting.

The study, a systematic review of 49 randomized trials, compared aprotinin with lysine analogues. It includes new information from The Blood Conservation Using Antifibrinolytics in a Randomized Trial (BART) study published in May which was stopped prematurely because of a significant number of deaths in patients taking aprotinin.

In the CMAJ review, while aprotinin was slightly more effective at controlling blood loss and transfusions, its higher risk of death and significantly more expensive price were deterrents for its use. The authors recommend tranexamic acid or aminocaproic as alternatives to prevent blood loss during surgery.

"Lysine analogues are almost as effective as aprotinin in controlling blood loss, are cheaper, and appear not to increase mortality," conclude Dr. David Henry and coauthors.

Source: Canadian Medical Association Journal

Explore further: Feds vows to publicize vaccine injury help program

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Aprotinin associated with increased risk of death

May 14, 2008

Aprotinin is associated with a 50 per cent increase in the relative risk of death, according to a major Canadian clinical trial comparing three drugs routinely used to prevent blood loss during heart surgery. The trial, published ...

Recommended for you

US approves new, hard-to-abuse hydrocodone pill (Update)

Nov 20, 2014

U.S. government health regulators on Thursday approved the first hard-to-abuse version of the painkiller hydrocodone, offering an alternative to a similar medication that has been widely criticized for lacking ...

Soaring generic drug prices draw Senate scrutiny

Nov 20, 2014

Some low-cost generic drugs that have helped restrain health care costs for decades are seeing unexpected price spikes of up to 8,000 percent, prompting a backlash from patients, pharmacists and now Washington ...

Only half of patients take their medications as prescribed

Nov 20, 2014

The cost of patients not taking their medications as prescribed can be substantial in terms of their health. Although a large amount of research evidence has tried to address this problem, there are no well-established ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.