Prescription Blood Thinners And Possible Problems

nformation You May Not Have Seen On The Label.

If the blood becomes too thick, or platelets become too sticky, oxygen and other nutrients can’t reach the cellular level. When the blood changes from a liquid to a solid, thrombosis, (blood clots) are the result. Diseases can’t flourish in an oxygen rich cellular atmosphere.  If blood is deficient in water, the outer hemoglobin ring on the red blood cell can’t efficiently pick up oxygen for delivery to the cells.  If sufficient water isn’t available, blood becomes sticky.  Nothing replaces water in these respects, not coffee, alcohol or electrolyte drinks.   See my article  "Depression and the RBC Hemoglobin Ring"  for further information.

Prescription drugs that contain coumadin (warfarin), Ticlopidine, Heparin and t-PA are classified as anticoagulants.  Aspirin is also widely prescribed for thinning the blood.

Coumarin, the most widely prescribed of the anticoagulants, was originally isolated from sweet clover.  Warfarin is the generic name for Coumarin.  Warfarin is used as a rat poison.  Warfarin causes hemorrhaging and the rat bleeds to death internally.  Needless to say, Coumarin can be dangerous if taken outside of the parameters set by the attending physician.  There are also many contraindications with foods, vitamins, oils and herbals in connection with Coumarin. 

Prescription Ticlopidine (Ticlid) can be used as an alternative for those intolerant to aspirin.  Heparin and t-PA are generally only used in emergency situations.

Madison Avenue fails to tell us in the ads that if aspirin is taken to thin the blood, it’s necessary to limit or eliminate vitamin K foods from the diet in order for aspirin to be effective.  Vitamin K also counteracts the anticoagulation mechanism of Coumarin and is contraindicated for people on anticoagulant therapies.  Taking aspirin or any other over the counter NSAID such as Motrin, Advil, Nuprin, Anaprox, Orudis, Oruvail, etc. without your physician’s supervision, if on anticoagulant therapy, can cause serious hemorrhaging and excessive bleeding.   If the patient is on anticoagulant therapy, it’s necessary to check with their physician for complete information about contraindications concerning anticoagulant therapy.

Where Coumarin, etc. are classified as anticoagulant agents, aspirin, vitamin E, garlic, fish oils, gingko biloba, CoQ10, green tea, etc. are classified as anti-platelet aggregation agents.  Anti-platelet agents are often sweepingly contraindicated for those on anticoagulant therapy.  But, there’s a test that can allow the doctor to closely monitor the anticoagulant therapy and anti-platelet activity.  If your doctor is familiar with the International Normalization Ratio (INR), they will be able to monitor and balance the intake of both anticoagulants and anti-platelet agents.  This is done using a test called template bleeding time (TBT).  This test can be done in the doctor’s office and checks the time it takes for bleeding to stop after the patient’s skin is nicked using a template device.  An abnormally long bleeding time indicates an increased hemorrhage risk.  If the bleeding time is lower than the guidelines, it indicates an increased clotting risk.

The tests are time consuming for both the patient and doctor.  But, according to research, if the physician closely monitors the INR and TBT results and then applies the information to the patient as an individual, it’s possible to reach an optimum balance between anticoagulant and anti-platelet aggregation therapy and a better state of health for the patient.  This balance can provide the best of both worlds.  Of course, it’s also up to the patient to want to be involved and rigidly follow the guidelines set forth by the doctor. 

Regular evaluation of anticoagulant and anti-platelet therapies is vitally important to ensure that excess bleeding or platelet aggregation doesn’t occur.  This is done using a PT test.  Close monitoring is especially important during the initial stages of anticoagulant and anti-platelet therapy.

In order to reduce blood homocysteine levels, a toxic compound that’s formed in the body that contributes to blood coagulation, adequate levels of vitamin B6, vitamin B12 and folic acid are required.  If all vitamins and supplements are eliminated from the diet, the patient may be at an increased risk of stroke and heart attack.

Further information can be accessed in the following research data.  Heck et al 2000, Fasey et al 2002, Hurlen et al 2002, Mizuno et al 1997, Sinatra et al 1997, Whitman et al, 1997, de Jong et al 1998, Selub et al 1998, Coppola et al 2000, Durand et al 2001 and Kuch et al 2001.

Ref: Folk Remedies, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) And Health Options From Around The World.