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Published on 16 November 2009

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FDA approves “heavy period” drug

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The first non-hormonal treatment for heavy menstrual bleeding has been licensed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the US.

Tranexamic acid, first approved in injection form in 1986 to treat excessive bleeding after tooth extraction, works by stabilising a protein that helps the blood to clot.

About 3 million US women are thought to suffer from Menorrhagia, the symptoms of which include severe pain and mood swings.

“Menorrhagia can be incapacitating for some women and can cause disruptions to work and family life,” said Dr Kathleen Uhl, the FDA’s associate commissioner of women’s health.

Reported side-effects include headaches, back pain, muscle and joint pain, anemia and fatigue.

Women using hormonal contraception have been advised against using the medication, as the combination could increase the risk of blood clots, strokes and heart attacks, the FDA said.

Copyright Press Association 2009

Food and Drug Administration



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