Anticoagulant drugs

A group of drugs used to treat and prevent abnormal blood clotting, to treat thrombosis, and to prevent and treat stroke and transient ischaemic attack. Anticoagulant drugs are also given to prevent abnormal blood clotting after major surgery (especially heart-valve replacement) or during haemodialysis (see dialysis). The most common anticoagulants are heparin and the newer heparin-derived drugs, such as tinzaparin, all of which have to be given by injection, and warfarin, which is taken orally. Excessive doses of anticoagulant drugs increase the risk of unwanted bleeding, and regular monitoring is needed.


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