Blood clotting and strokes could be prevented by a new medicine that has been given the green light for use by the NHS in Scotland.
Blood-thinning drug Pradaxa is taken by adults who suffer from atrial fibrilation.
Tests by the Scottish Medicines Consortium (SMC) found that it had the same success levels as Warfarin, which is also used to protect against strokes.
Different side effects are associated with the two alternative medicines. Unlike Pradaxa, an increased risk of major bleeding is associated with Warfarin, but dyspepsia is more common in those who take Pradaxa as opposed to Warfarin.
The SMC said that it gave Pradaxa its approval because it is effective and provides reasonable value for money. Also, nurses are not required to monitor patients’ blood after they have received the drug.