Brilinta is a brand-name medication that contains the active ingredient ticagrelor. It’s classified as an antiplatelet medication. It’s used for a variety of uses that have to do with the heart and blood vessels. If you have had a heart attack in the past, a stroke, acute coronary syndrome, a stent, coronary artery disease, or a mini stroke, this medication can help to lower your risk of having a stroke, heart attack, or dying from a blocked artery. It can help prevent complications from all of these conditions and events.

This drug keeps the platelets in the blood from getting stuck together. This can prevent you from getting a blood clot that can block an artery and therefore block blood flow to the heart. If this happens, it can mean a higher risk of having a stroke or heart attack. It’s generally used alongside aspirin for a regimen that helps reduce the risk of serious heart events. It’s available in tablet form and is generally taken twice a day.

Precautions and Warnings of Brilinta

If you’re allergic to Brilinta, don’t take it. You also shouldn’t take it if you’re allergic to generic ticagrelor any other drugs that are classified as P2Y12 platelet inhibitors. It also shouldn’t be taken by anyone who has severe liver problems or has a current or past brain bleed. You may need to have some tests to see how healthy your liver is before you take this drug.

If you currently have a stent, don’t stop this medication without talking to your doctor first. If you stop it too quickly it can cause a higher risk of having a heart attack, a blood clot, or dying. If you aren’t able to swallow this medication, you can crush the tablets, mix them with water, and drink the mixture quickly. You’ll need to follow that with another glass of water.

If you’re scheduled for any type of surgery, even dental, tell the provider that you take this medication. You may have to stop taking it before the surgery so that you don’t have a high risk of bleeding afterward. Make sure your doctor also knows all of the medications that you take, even if they’re over-the-counter. It’s also important to tell your doctor if you have had any recent surgery or an injury, bleeding problems, colon polyps, stomach ulcers, a past stroke, lung problems such as asthma or COPD, or liver problems. If you are taking any asthma or COPD medications, be sure to let your prescriber know.

If you’re pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or you may become pregnant, tell your doctor before you start this medication. It’s unknown whether Brilinta can harm a baby during pregnancy. It’s not recommended to breastfeed while taking this medication. Science doesn’t know whether it ends up in breast milk.

If you’re going to have heart bypass surgery, you will have to stop taking this medication before the procedure. When you stop taking it, work with your doctor on a regular schedule for stopping and when you can start it again. Don’t stop this medication without discussing it with your doctor. Even if you have bleeding, don’t stop taking Brilinta.

It’s possible for the medication to cause you to bleed more easily, and this can be severe. Get immediate medical help if the bleeding doesn’t stop. You could also have internal bleeding. This can happen in the intestines and stomach. If you have urine that’s pink or red or you have bloody or black stools or you vomit something that looks like coffee grounds or you cough up any blood, call your doctor right away. You may have internal bleeding.

If you’re told to take aspirin along with Brilinta, make sure that you know the dosage to take daily and that you consistently take it. Don’t use alcohol while on these medications. When alcohol is mixed with aspirin, it can make any stomach bleeding worse.

Brilinta Side Effects

There are many side effects possible when taking this drug, though that doesn’t mean that everyone has them. If you do get side effects, they may disappear after a couple of weeks. Others may last longer. Some of the most common side effects of this medication include shortness of breath, bleeding and bruising more easily such as having nose bleeds, and it taking a while for your bleeding to stop.

Allergic Reactions

A serious allergic reaction is also possible. Some of these effects include:

  • Racing heart
  • Breathing trouble
  • Wheezing
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Fever
  • A general feeling of illness
  • Swelling in the throat, tongue, lips, mouth, or face
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Joint pain
  • Throat tightness or problems with swallowing
  • Stomach cramps
  • Feeling lightheaded or dizzy or fainting
  • Hives

Heart Arrhythmias

Brilinta can also cause changes to your heart rhythm that cause it to beat more slowly. If this happens, you may have these side effects and need to call your doctor:

  • Dizziness, fainting, or a lightheaded feeling
  • Chest pain
  • Confusion
  • Shortness of breath
  • A feeling of weakness or being tired easily

Brilinta Drug Interactions

Tell your doctor about everything you take, even if it’s an herbal supplement or OTC pain reliever

There are many drugs, both over-the-counter and prescription, that can interact poorly with Brilinta. Some shouldn’t be used at all with this drug, while others may be prescribed with it while you’re being closely monitored for problems. Some of the drugs that can interact with Brilinta include:

  • Flibanserin
  • Lomitapide
  • Abrocitinib
  • Itraconazole
  • Apalutamide
  • Codeine
  • Fentanyl
  • Hydromorphone
  • Ivabradine
  • Ketoconazole
  • Morphine
  • Oxycodone
  • Lonafarnib
  • Ritonavir
  • Oxymorphone
  • Topotecan
  • Venatoclax
  • Abciximab
  • Anagrelide
  • Atazanavir
  • Cabozantinib
  • Citalopram
  • Clarithromycin
  • Dabrafenib
  • Digoxin
  • Etravirine
  • Fenoprofen
  • Fish oil
  • Flurbiprofen
  • Grapefruit
  • Ibuprofin
  • Heparin
  • Ketoprofen
  • Lovastatin
  • Meloxicam
  • Phenobarbital
  • Rifampin
  • John’s wort
  • Warfarin

Strengths and Dosages of Brilinta

It comes in tablets that are 60 mg and 90 mg. The dosage that a patient takes depends on what their exact condition is and how well they tolerate this medication. Taking 180 mg a day is common for some patients. Some patients are on 180 mg a day for the first year and then put on a maintenance dose of 120 mg per day.

Brilinta tablets:60 mg, 90 mg

Cost of Brilinta in the USA

Many factors go into the price you pay for a prescription medication. The retail cost for a one-month supply of 60 tablets at the 90 mg level is about $485. You can get a discount by using a coupon card that you find at the pharmacy or print at home. These can be used with or without your health insurance to get the price lower. If you have health insurance, your policy largely determines the price.

Why Is Brilinta So Expensive?

It’s a brand-name drug, and these are expensive to bring to market. It takes many years of development and testing to make a drug available. Because there isn’t a generic of this medication, the price remains high because of the lack of competition.

Brilinta Alternatives

There are many alternatives for this drug. These include:

FAQs of Brilinta

What is Brilinta used for?

It’s an antiplatelet medication that can help heart patients to have a lower risk of complications such as heart attacks, strokes, and death.

How long does Brilinta stay in your system?

It can stay in your system for about five days.

What to avoid when taking Brilinta?

Avoid alcohol and any OTC pain relievers other than those your doctor tells you to take. Avoid breastfeeding and eating grapefruit.

Who makes Brilinta?

It’s made by AstraZeneca.

What happens when you top taking Brilinta?

Stopping this medication can put patients at risk for heart attacks, strokes, and death. If you have to stop taking it, follow your doctor’s guide for tapering off it.

Why does Brilinta cause shortness of breath?

Taking Brilinta can result in shortness of breath because it inhibits nucleoside transporter-1 and raises levels of adenosine plasma. This results in anywhere from 14% to 21% of patients getting this side effect.

When will Brilinta become generic? When does the patent expire?

Brilinta’s generic form has been FDA-approved, but it isn’t on the market yet. It’s expected to be on the market sometime in 2024. The patent expires in 2036.

What cold medicine can I take with Brilinta?

Talk to your doctor about the cold medicines you can take. Some patients are able to take Mucinex along with Brilinta. Many cold medicines have OTC pain relievers in them that interact badly with Brilinta.

What if I miss a dose of Brilinta?

If you miss a dose and it’s been just a couple of hours, you can take the missed dose. However, if it’s been a long time and the time for the next dose is coming up, don’t take the missed dose. Two doses shouldn’t be taken in close proximity to each other.

When do I stop taking Brilinta before an upcoming surgery?

Patients generally have to be off the medication for at least a few days. The amount of time that you’ll need to pause the medication will be up to your doctor.

What tier is the drug Brilinta?

It’s a tier-3 medication.

How long do people usually take Brilinta?

Patients generally take it for at least six to 12 months. If it works well and is tolerated well, it may be used long-term for many years.

How long does it take to get Brilinta out of your system?

It takes about five days for it to completely clear your system.

What happens if you take too much Brilinta?

An overdose can cause nausea and vomiting as well as an irregular heartbeat. If you take too much, call your doctor right away. Get emergency medical care if you have blood in your stool or urine or you have bleeding that you can’t stop.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment recommendations. It should not be taken as an endorsement of any specific medication or treatment. Individual health conditions and responses to treatment can vary greatly; therefore, this information should not be seen as a guarantee of safety, suitability, or effectiveness for any particular individual. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized medical advice and before making any decisions regarding your health or treatment plans.

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