Good News for Needle-Phobes

 From the annual scientific meeting of the American Society of Hematology, Orlando:

 A knee or hip replacement is challenging enough for doctors and patients, but then physicians have to be mindful of postoperative venous thromboembolism. Currently, many joint replacement patients get a lparting gift when they leave the hospital: a starter kit and prescription for enoxaparin. The needle-phobic patients are not exempt.

courtesy of flickr user rdmuni (creative commons)

But there is good news for needle-phobes:  Gary Raskob, Ph.D., of the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, presented data at the American Society of Hematology’s annual meeting showing that oral apixaban 2.5 mg twice daily was as effective as a once-daily injection of 40 mg enoxaparin for preventing VTE. 

Emphasis on  ORAL dosing. And there was no increased risk of bleeding.

 As Dr. Raskob presented the data, my view on the news was, “I won’t have to stab myself with a needle if/when I have to have joint replacement surgery!”

courtesy of flickr user hackjob (creative commons)

I suspect the doctors and nurses would be as happy about this as the patients. The prefilled syringes are designed for (relatively) easy use, but beyond the safety and convenience, an oral medication would save the nurses the added time and effort of reassuring the needle-phobes.

–Heidi Splete (on twitter @hsplete)

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Filed under Hematology, IMNG

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