A drug that is used to treat bleeding disorders, like hemophilia, is being used to control bleeding in severely wounded U.S soldiers in Iraq.
The drug Recombinant Activated Factor VIII has been proven in the past to cause serious complications in non-hemophiliacs. It can cause heart attacks, and strokes due to clot formation. Army doctors, in spite of the projected side effects, continue to prescribe it to control life threatening blood loss.
Jawed Fareed an expert in blood clotting therapeutics warns that this drug is very dangerous if not used cautiously. Doctors should refrain from prescribing it inappropriately, he cautioned.
Statistical data shows that over 1,000 critically wounded American soldiers have been treated so far with this drug. According to a report released by FDA, about 43 people might have died due to drug induced clot formation which results in strokes and heart attacks.
A Danish pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk makes this drug which is accepted in the U.S to treat hemophiliacs. A single dose costs a whopping $6,000 in the U.S.