GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) is a potential side effect of Pradaxa®, the anticoagulant medication approved by the FDA in late 2010 for reducing the risk of blood clotting in individuals with atrial fibrillation.
GERD occurs in many people; mild cases are usually referred to as heartburn. There are several over-the-counter medications for it, in addition to simple ways to avoid getting heartburn (e.g., diet changes). Severe and/or long-lasting GERD can damage the esophagus.
What Is GERD?
GERD occurs when a muscle at the end of the esophagus (the tube through which food passes from your mouth to your stomach) won't close properly. Without this closure, the contents of your stomach leak back up into the esophagus, irritating the tissues that line the esophagus. The leaking is called "reflux." If the reflux happens more than twice a week, a diagnosis of GERD may be made.
Signs of GERD
The most common symptoms of GERD are the feeling of heartburn, plus regurgitation (the stomach's contents coming back up into the mouth), and trouble swallowing. Less common symptoms of GERD are:
- chest pain
- increased salivation
- pain with swallowing
Ask a Knowledgeable Lawyer about GERD and Pradaxa® (dabigatran exetilate)
The cardiac condition for which the FDA approved Pradaxa® treatment, non-valvular atrial fibrillation (AF), affects millions of people. Pradaxa® is administered to help prevent blood clotting and strokes in patients with AF. However, since the drug was put on the market, it has been linked to a range of side effects. GERD and other gastrointestinal problems are some of the more common side effects.
But, the drug has also been linked to an increase in the risk for life threatening side effects such as severe internal bleeding and heart attack. If you are prescribed Pradaxa® (dabigatran), you should be aware of all the potential side effects and their symptoms.
If you experienced severe GERD or other side effects while taking the medication, contact your physician. If you are diagnosed with a serious side effect of the medication, you may want to speak with an attorney about seeking compensation for your damages. To learn more, contact a Pradaxa® injury attorney today.