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Supportive Care

Brand names:


Other names:

Polydeoxyribonucleotide; Prociclide

Often used for:

Veno-occlusive disease of the liver (VOD; also known as hepatic sinusoidal obstruction syndrome or SOS)

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What is defibrotide?

Defibrotide (Defitelio®) is a medicine used to treat hepatic veno-occlusive disease (VOD). It works to help prevent or break down blood clots that can form in blood vessels of the liver.

Patients who have hematopoietic cell transplant (stem cell transplant) or certain chemotherapy medicines are at higher risk for VOD.

Defibrotide is usually given by IV every 6 hours for up to 60 days.

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Given as a liquid that is injected into the veins (IV)

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Possible side effects

  • Hypotension (low blood pressure; symptoms include dizziness, passing out, or headache)
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Easy bleeding
  • Nose bleeds
  • Infections

Not all patients who take defibrotide will experience these side effects. Common side effects are in bold, but there may be others. Please report all suspected side effects to your doctor or pharmacist.

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Tips for families

Be sure to discuss these and other recommendations with your doctor or pharmacist.

  • Patients should tell their doctor if they are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • This medication may increase risk of excessive bleeding, especially in patients who have a bleeding disorder or take blood thinners or anticoagulant medicines.
  • Doctor might order certain lab tests to check body’s response to the medication.