Dabigatran etexilate, a direct thrombin inhibitor, has become an alternative to warfarin for stroke prevention in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. There remains a concern about its overdose and life-threatening hemorrhage because of unavailability of appropriate coagulation tests to monitor and antidotes to reverse its effects. There are no clinical data about its safety in patients with fluctuating renal function. Multiple bleeding events reported with dabigatran have prompted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to further investigate these reports. Four clinical cases with life-threatening bleeding, strategies that were used to achieve hemostasis and a brief literature review to demonstrate the hematologic emergency caused by dabigatran are presented in this study.
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