Learn Life-Saving Information Now! All About Anticoagulation Therapy and Determining Signs of Low INR.
One of the key factors to successful anticoagulation therapy is patient education. You need to know about diet restrictions, basic drug interactions, and most important of all, you need to know what signs and symptoms to look for if your warfarin is not working properly.
Very few patients test their INR at home. It is therefore difficult to determine if your INR is dangerously high or low without going to a Coumadin Clinic. Unfortunately, a high or low INR can be fatal. So what can you do? Just assume your doctor got your dose right and it is out of your hands? NO! You can learn the signs and symptoms of high and low INR and take immediate action if any of them appear.
Signs of Low INR
A low INR means your anticoagulation dose is too low and your blood is clotting too quickly. Some people might say your blood is “too thick.” This puts you at risk of developing conditions caused by a blood clot.
A low INR can be far more dangerous than a high INR because the signs and symptoms are more difficult to recognize. A high INR will likely present as unusual bleeding or bruising before turning into a life-threatening condition, giving a patient time to seek medical attention. Conversely, a person will usually be unaware that their INR is too low until they develop a DVT, PE or stroke. Unfortunately, these three conditions caused by a low INR frequently cause permanent life-changing injuries or death.
If any of the following symptoms occur, it could be because your INR is too low:
All patients on anticoagulants should be familiar with the signs and symptoms of a low INR. If any of these symptoms occur, call your doctor or seek emergency medical attention.
Common causes of a low INR, or of a blood clot in general, include:
Ways to decrease the chances of having a blood clot when taking anticoagulants:
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