(HealthDay News) -- People taking the blood-thinning drug warfarin who monitor their own blood and adjust their dosage can reduce the risk of blood clots by half, British researchers report.
Warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven) is taken to prevent potentially deadly clots in patients with conditions such as atrial fibrillation -- an abnormal heart rhythm -- or a mechanical heart valve. But if the blood is thinned too much, serious bleeding can occur. Keeping the drug in check requires monthly monitoring and frequent doctors visits.
"The concept of self-care and self-monitoring is a growing part of health care it is used widely in diabetes, asthma and hypertension management," said lead researcher Dr. Carl Heneghan, director of the Center for Evidence-Based Medicine at the University of Oxford.
"The evidence shows that self-monitoring is an effective strategy to reduce thromboembolic events in patients taking oral anticoagulants such as warfarin," he added. Read more...
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