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Drug That Stops Bleeding Could Save Lives
Date:6/14/2010

as some worry that TXA might lead to more heart attacks, strokes or clots in the lungs, the researchers observed no such increase among patients getting the drug.

Dr. Jerrold H. Levy, deputy chair for research at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta and author of an accompanying journal editorial, said that, "these data are really neat, because any therapy to reduce mortality in trauma is, I think, a major finding."

Using this drug to treat trauma patients is a completely new idea, Levy said. "I think people should consider it [TXA] following trauma on the basis of this study," he said.

Currently, TXA is not generally used in emergency rooms to treat trauma patients, but Roberts believes that this study could change that.

"It's not our job to tell doctors how to treat their patients, but this is a drug that is safe and effective in a condition where people have a high risk of death," he said.

The researchers believe that TXA could have even wider uses, such as reducing brain bleeds after brain injury. The drug could also be used to reduce postpartum bleeding, which the researchers say causes some 100,000 deaths a year worldwide.

In fact, a trial to see whether TXA can reduce postpartum bleeding has started, the team noted.

Levy however, cautioned that the results of this study apply only to TXA and do not mean that people should try similar drugs hoping for similar results.

"Everybody wants to be creative, but you have to look at the data, and they used TXA," Levy said. "You can't get creative and say 'Ah, one of the other drugs will do the same thing' -- you don't know that, and that's one of my concerns."

More information

For more information on trauma, visit the U.S. National Institute of General Medical Science.



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