Anticoagulant drugs, or drug thinners, as they are known, are prescribed to help prevent blood clots. Blood clots are dangerous because they can cause strokes or heart attacks. But as beneficial as these drugs may be, they can also pose very serious health threats if they are not taken correctly.
So, if you are ever prescribed blood thinners by your physician, what steps could you take to help stay safe from harm? The Agency for health care Research and Quality has published an informative guide on the subject of blood thinner safety. The following are a few of the key points made in that guide:
- If you ever experience a hard bump or a hard fall, immediately get in touch with your doctor and get to a hospital. A fall or bump could cause internal bleeding.
- Be very careful when using sharp objects such as knives and scissors.
- Always follow medication directions carefully. In some cases, the blood thinner must be taken at a specific time of day.
- Some blood thinners do not mix well with vitamin K. Find out from your doctor if this is the case with the blood thinner you are taking.
- Be aware of any other drugs that could cause an adverse effect if taken with your blood thinner. Products containing aspirin could possibly increase bleeding risks. Many over-the-counter pain relievers and other remedies could also alter the way a blood thinner works.
In order to avoid any medication errors in the prescribing of blood thinners, your doctor should go over the instructions for their use very carefully. If you are on any other medications, your doctor must make sure that these medicines are safe to use in conjunction with your prescribed blood thinner. A dangerous combination of prescriptions could cause serious harm.
In the event that you or a loved one ever suffers a serious injury because a physician failed to properly inform you on how to use a drug safely, you may have grounds for a lawsuit. An Arizona medical malpractice attorney could look into the matter for you and may be able to offer services to aid you in seeking compensation.