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Tags: blood-thinning | drugs | medications | anti-coagulant | clot

Most Common Use of an Anti-Coagulant or Blood-Thinning Medication

Monday, 10 March 2014 10:02 PM EDT

With rising incidences of stroke and heart attack, the use of anti-coagulant drugs has risen multifold. Anticoagulant drugs are actually used to prevent clots.

The formation of a clot is a very complicated, yet natural process when the body is subject to any injury. A clot forms to prevent bleeding from the site of a wound to seal it naturally. Sometimes, excess clotting can cause harm, and anticoagulant medications, commonly known as blood-thinning medications, are prescribed to prevent further clotting.

Top Doctor: Slash Heart Attack Risk 81 Percent

Blood-thinning drugs are also used to treat other conditions such as heart attack and stroke where clotting is a major factor to be addressed. Awareness on the use of anti-coagulant medications is important for users.

Blood-thinning drugs are known by different names, such as antithrombics, fibrinolytics, and thrombolytics.

Warfarin is one of the commonly used blood-thinning medications in use for a long time.

Now many other blood-thinning drugs, such as heparin, dabigatran (Pradaxa), rivaroxaban (Xarelto), and apixaban (Eliquis), are available. Medically, they are known as anticoagulants.

If there is a tendency for the blood to clot more, then anticoagulant drugs are prescribed. Deep vein thrombosis is another medical condition for which blood-thinning or anticoagulant drugs are prescribed. In serious conditions, surgery is usually done to avoid clots in vital organs like the heart, after which anticoagulant medications may be prescribed.
Blood clots in vital organs may cause serious health hazards like heart attack, stroke, pulmonary embolism, and irregular heartbeats. Interestingly, blood-thinning medications actually do not ‘thin’ the blood but actually prevent clot formation.

It is important for you to know that these blood-thinning medications do not melt or dissolve the clot if it is already formed, but they can prevent further clotting.
When you are on anti-coagulant medications, you should know that some simple daily used medications like aspirin, painkillers, antacids, anti-allergic drugs, antibiotics, and antifungal medications can have adverse interactions with the blood-thinning medications.

Certain herbal medications, alcohol, and smoking can also have interactions and need to be avoided or taken under the knowledge of medical professionals.
Blood thinning medications may cause some side effects like flatulence, upset stomach, diarrhea, itching, and cough. They must strictly be taken under expert supervision.

Anti-coagulant medications may also have some serious side effects like excessive bleeding. It is important to take blood-thinning drugs only in the prescribed dosage. You must also discuss the use of anti-coagulants with your doctor if you are planning pregnancy.

Your doctor may recommend you to stop the use of anticoagulant medications if you are to go through some procedures like endoscopy, colonoscopy, etc. Many medications interact with anticoagulant drugs, so your doctor must be aware of your anticoagulant  use. 
Top Doctor: Slash Heart Attack Risk 81 Percent

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Anti-coagulant drugs, commonly known as blood-thinning medications, are being used to treat a lot of medical conditions where the clot is to be prevented. It is prudent to learn about their judicious use, interactions, and side effects before starting a course of them.
Monday, 10 March 2014 10:02 PM
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