Rivaroxaban is an anticoagulant medication prescribed to treat deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE) in adults, and to prevent their recurrence following initial treatment. It is also used to prevent strokes and serious blood clots in adults with atrial fibrillation that is not caused by heart valve disease.
Rivaroxaban is administered along with aspirin to reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke, or death in adults with coronary artery disease or peripheral arterial disease. The medication is also used to treat and prevent DVT and PE in children and certain infants who have undergone at least 5 days of initial anticoagulation treatment. After heart surgery, it is prescribed for children aged 2 years and older who have congenital heart disease. Rivaroxaban functions as a factor Xa inhibitor, blocking the activity of a natural substance responsible for blood clot formation.
Uses and Dosage
Administer this medication orally as instructed by your physician. Carefully follow the instructions provided by your physician and do not alter your dose, take it more frequently, or discontinue it without your doctor’s approval.
If you are taking this medication to prevent blood clots caused by an irregular heartbeat, the recommended dose is generally taken once daily with your evening meal. If you are taking this drug to prevent blood clots resulting from other conditions, such as knee or hip replacement surgery, hospitalization, or after a Fontan procedure, you should also take it once daily. For adults taking rivaroxaban to treat blood clots, the dose is usually taken twice daily for the first three weeks and then once daily. For children being treated for blood clots, the usual dose is taken once daily.
The 10-milligram tablet can be taken with or without food, while the 15-milligram and 20-milligram tablets should be consumed with food.
If you are unable to swallow whole tablets, you may crush the tablet and mix it with applesauce. Consume the entire mixture immediately and do not prepare a supply for future use.
If you are administering this medication through a tube into the stomach (nasogastric or gastric tube), ask your healthcare provider for detailed instructions on how to properly mix and administer it.
The dosage and duration of treatment are determined by your medical condition and response to treatment. In children, the dosage is also determined by weight.
Take this medication regularly to obtain the most benefits. To help you remember, consume it at the same time(s) each day.
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention:
- muscle spasm
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
- back pain
- bleeding gums
- bloody stools
- bowel or bladder dysfunction
- burning, crawling, or tingling feelings
- coughing up blood
- difficulty with breathing or swallowing
- increased menstrual flow or vaginal bleeding
- leg weakness
- prolonged bleeding from cuts
- red or black, tarry stools
- red or dark brown urine
- vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds
- pain in the arms or legs
- wound secretion
Before taking rivaroxaban, inform your healthcare provider of any allergies you may have or any other allergies to inactive ingredients in the medication, which may cause allergic reactions or other problems.
Inform your healthcare provider of your medical history before using this medication, especially if you have or have had cancer, liver disease, kidney disease, bleeding problems, stroke, artificial heart valves, recent major injury/surgery, blood disorders, frequent falls/injuries, certain eye problems, a certain clotting disorder, or certain hereditary enzyme problems.
Inform all your doctors and dentists that you are taking rivaroxaban. If you plan to undergo surgery or any medical/dental procedures, notify your doctor or dentist that you are using this medication.
Using this medication may cause stomach bleeding. Regular use of alcohol while using this medication will increase the risk of stomach bleeding, limit alcohol intake.
This medication can cause bleeding, so it is necessary to exercise caution when handling sharp objects such as safety razors and nail cutters. For shaving, use an electric razor and a soft toothbrush while brushing your teeth. Avoid activities like contact sports, which may result in injury. If you fall or experience an injury, especially if you hit your head, contact your doctor right away. Your doctor may need to check you for hidden bleeding that could be severe.
Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this medication, particularly bleeding.
If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, inform your doctor. During pregnancy, this medication should only be used when necessary. Discuss the risks and benefits of taking this medication with your healthcare provider.
This medication may pass into breast milk, consult your doctor before breastfeeding.
Form and Strength
Xarelto is available in the following forms and strengths:
Xarelto film-coated tablet:
Why is it better to take Xarelto at night?
Evening intake of rivaroxaban leads to prolonged exposure to rivaroxaban concentrations and better matches the morning hypofibrinolysis.
Can I drink a glass of wine while on Xarelto?
It’s not generally recommended to drink alcohol while taking blood thinners like Xarelto.