There are different types of blood thinners. These drugs help prevent dangerous blood clots from forming. They include antiplatelet drugs and anticoagulant drugs. Blood thinners raise your risk of bleeding. If your doctor gives you one of these drugs, they’ll watch you closely for side effects during treatment.
These drugs work by interfering with the action of platelets in your bloodstream. Platelets are blood cells that help stop bleeding by bunching together and forming a clot.
Antiplatelet drugs include:
- anagrelide (Agrylin)
- clopidogrel (Plavix)
- prasugrel (Effient)
- ticagrelor (Brilinta)
- tirofiban (Aggrestat)
- vorapaxar (Zontivity)
- dipyridamole (Persantine)
These drugs work by extending the time it takes for your blood to clot. If your doctor gives you this drug, they’ll monitor you closely to make sure the dosage is right for you. It can be tricky to keep your blood at the correct thinning level, so your doctor needs to check often that your dosage is accurate.
Examples of these drugs include:
Anticoagulants come as oral or injectable drugs. The injectable forms are often given in the hospital by a healthcare provider. You may eventually be able to give the injections to yourself and continue to take them at home. In some cases, you may only take them at home. These injectable drugs are given subcutaneously (under the skin).
Injectable anticoagulants include: