Apixaban (Eliquis), dabigatran (Pradaxa) and rivaroxaban (Xarelto): Information for consumers

Safety advisory - risk factors for bleeding

24 September 2013

Apixaban (Eliquis), dabigatran (Pradaxa) and rivaroxaban (Xarelto) are oral anticoagulants approved by the TGA and are all now funded by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

Anticoagulants are sometimes referred to as 'blood thinners' and are used to prevent blood clots.

As with all medicines, there are benefits and risks associated with the use of apixaban, dabigatran and rivaroxaban. If you have been prescribed any of these medicines, your doctor has weighed the risks of your taking this medicine against the expected benefits.

If you are taking apixaban, dabigatran or rivaroxaban:

  • Do not stop taking it suddenly or change the dose without consulting your doctor. Stopping these medicines suddenly can increase your risk of stroke or may increase the risk of developing a blood clot.
  • See your doctor immediately if you notice bleeding, red or brown urine, or red or black bowel motions.
  • Remember to tell all doctors, dentists and pharmacists who are treating you that you are taking apixaban, dabigatran or rivaroxaban. Similarly, tell them what other medicines you are taking - especially aspirin, anti-inflammatory medicines and other medicines used to prevent blood clots, such as clopidogrel and warfarin - including any that you get without a prescription from a pharmacy, supermarket or health food store.

Further information about these medicines is available in their respective Consumer Medicines Information (CMI), which can be accessed through the TGA website's CMI search facility or obtained by your doctor or pharmacist.

If you have any questions or concerns about using apixaban, dabigatran or rivaroxaban, ask your doctor.

Additional information for health professionals is also available on the TGA website.

Reporting problems

Consumers and health professionals are encouraged to report problems with medicines or vaccines. Your report will contribute to our monitoring of these products.

The TGA cannot give advice about an individual's medical condition. You are strongly encouraged to talk with a health professional if you are concerned about a possible adverse event associated with a medicine or vaccine.