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Dalteparin for the treatment of venous thromboembolism (DVT/PE)

Patient information A-Z

Who is this leaflet for?

This leaflet is for patients receiving dalteparin injections for the treatment of deep vein thrombosis (blood clot in the vein) or pulmonary embolism (blood clot in the lung).

How do I administer dalteparin?

Dalteparin is given by a small injection under the skin (subcutaneous injection). You should administer the dose of dalteparin at about the same time each day into your abdomen or outer thigh area, as you have been taught. You may notice some bruising around the injection site; this is normal and usually nothing to be concerned about.

Are there any side effects?

  • Dalteparin is an anticoagulant; it makes the blood take longer to clot. The most common side effects are minor bruising or bleeding and pain at the injection site. For minor bruising or bleeding concerns please consult the anticoagulation service, your GP or NHS 111.
  • Severe, uncontrollable bleeding or bruising is a more serious side effect of dalteparin therapy. If you cut yourself, apply firm pressure to the site for at least five minutes using a clean dry dressing. If you experience severe uncontrollable or unexplained bleeding or you receive a serious head injury you should seek medical advice immediately by attending your local A&E (Emergency department).
  • Very rarely dalteparin can cause a complication called heparin induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) that can make patients prone to new clots. This usually occurs 5-10 days after starting dalteparin injections. If you experience severe reactions at the injection sites or symptoms of new clots contact your doctor.

What other medicines can affect the result of my anticoagulation?

  • You must not take dalteparin if you have a condition which puts you at significant risk of major bleeding.
  • Make sure your GP knows if you are taking any other medicine. Some drugs can interact with dalteparin; be sure to inform your doctor if you are given a prescription for another drug.
  • You should not take other anticoagulants or antiplatelets such as aspirin or clopidogrel unless they have been specifically prescribed by your doctor. It is also advisable to avoid non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like diclofenac or ibuprofen.
  • If you purchase any over the counter medication or herbal remedies consult your pharmacist first to ensure these are safe to take whilst on dalteparin.

Who needs to know that I am receiving an anticoagulant medication?

  • Tell any doctor or health care professional prescribing you medicine that you currently take dalteparin. They will advise you which medicines are safe to take with dalteparin.
  • Tell your pharmacist if you are planning to buy an over the counter or herbal medicine.
  • Tell your dentist, or any health care worker involved in your medical care.

Please note

  • Dalteparin is safe to take whilst pregnant and when breastfeeding.
  • If you need further supplies of your medication, contact your GP unless you have been advised otherwise.

Contacts / further information

Addenbrooke’s outpatient anticoagulation service.
Telephone: 01223 217127
Email Addenbrooke’s outpatient anticoagulation service

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Contact us

Cambridge University Hospitals
NHS Foundation Trust
Hills Road, Cambridge

Telephone +44 (0)1223 245151