An Anticoagulant stops your blood from clotting within the blood vessels.
The treatment is safe provided you follow the DO’s and DON’Ts listed on this page.
Always carry your yellow dosage letter with you and show it to your doctor or dentist when obtaining treatment. Show it to your Pharmacist when you are having a prescription dispensed and when purchasing medicines. As a pharmacist can advise you, it is in your own interest that you purchase all medicines from a Pharmacy. Also show it to anyone giving treatment which may result in bleeding.
|DO carry this leaflet with you.
Show it to the Doctor. Dentist or Pharmacist before you receive any medicine or treatment.
|DO keep your appointments for your blood to be checked.
While taking anticoagulants you must have regular blood tests to check the dose of tablets you need. If you cannot attend tell the doctor or clinic and make another appointment.
|DO remember the name, strength and colour of your anticoagulant.
|DO inform the doctor of bruising or bleeding problems immediately.
- Prolonged bleeding from cuts.
- Bleeding that does not stop itself.
- Nose bleeds or bleeding gums.
- Red or dark brown urine.
- Red or black stools.
- For women, increased bleeding during periods, or any other vaginal bleeding.
|DO remind your doctor or dentist that you are taking an anticoagulant if any surgery or dental treatment is needed.
|DON’T miss a dose of anticoagulant.
If you do make a note of the date and tell the clinic or doctor when you next have a blood test. If you miss more than 1 dose ask your doctor for advice.
|DON’T take an extra dose of anticoagulant if you are unsure if you have taken your tablets.
If necessary use a calendar and mark off each dose by a line through the date.
|DON’T run out of tablets.
Always ensure you have a further weeks supply.
|DON’T take aspirin or any preparation containing aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) unless this is prescribed by a doctor who knows you are taking anticoagulants.
Aspirin is present in many painkillers and flu medicine, and may not be displayed on the container. If in doubt ask the pharmacist or doctor. Paracetamol can be taken in normal doses while on anticoagulants. Many other types of tablets may also interfere with anticoagulant treatment and these include some sleeping tablets or sedatives, liquid paraffin, antibiotics, cholesterol lowering agents and some medicine for epilepsy. If in doubt always ask. Always tell the clinic about any changes in your medicine.
|DON’T go on crash diets or start ‘binge’ eating.
Consult your doctor on dietary changes.
|DON’T take more then moderate amounts of alcohol.
Marked changes in consumption can be dangerous.
Oral anticoagulants taken in the early weeks of pregnancy carry a small risk of damaging the unborn child.
If you are a woman of childbearing age receiving anticoagulants you should not start a pregnancy without consulting your doctor, who will be able to decide whether or not you should continue your anticoagulation therapy.
If you find that your period is one week overdue, and you think you may e pregnant, you must see your doctor straight away.