Monday, February 12, 2007

OK, there are now three things I want to remember if I ever need coronary bypass surgery: try to get bloodless surgery; have the operation performed off the pump, i.e., with the heart still beating; and see if I can talk the surgeon into using aminocaproic acid or tranexamic acid to limit my blood loss instead of aprotinin. This article says:

More deaths occurred in patients treated with aprotinin than in those treated with two other blood-loss-limiting drugs -- aminocaproic acid and tranexamic acid.

The scientists concluded that 10,000 deaths could have been avoided over the five-year period "had aprotinin been replaced with either of these generic agents."

The report is published in the Feb. 7 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association.

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