medical IDs for blood thinners

Medical IDs for Blood Thinners

The confidence to live with blood thinners

Life on blood thinners can be tricky. Monitoring vitamins, supplements, and overall diet is important to make sure the blood is not too thin or too thick. Having support is key to the safety of this treatment. A medical ID is a potentially life-saving bracelet for anyone on anticoagulants or antiplatelet medicine.

Medical IDs for blood thinners allow people to list all their medical conditions and medications prescribed for them. It also informs healthcare workers whether a patient has a pacemaker or other medical device. For those who have blood clotting issues, the type of blood is also recorded in case of excessive bleeding.

Blood thinners can cause bleeding from seemingly-benign accidents. Excessive bleeding can be life-threatening without the right information and treatment. Having your critical information readily available will allow emergency healthcare workers to use reversal agents as necessary during treatment.

That’s why a medical ID for blood thinners is critical for people taking these medications for longer periods of time.

How MedicAlert protects those who take blood thinners

One thing you shouldn’t worry about is what could happen if there’s an emergency. MedicAlert’s protection plans offer benefits that extend beyond the ID, providing safety and peace of mind for those who are required to take blood thinner medication.

24/7 Emergency Response

Our team provides first responders the information they need to provide fast, accurate care.

Digital Health Profile

All your vital information, all in one place for you and your caregiver.

Emergency Contact Notification

In an emergency, we connect families so that no one is alone in a crisis.

Patient Instructions

Share the information that’s important to your care, such as use of rescue medications or contraindication for tests like MRIs.

Pair a medical ID for blood thinners with the protection plan that’s right for you.

What Are Blood Thinners?

Blood thinners are designed to prevent blood from clotting. These clots can cause serious medical issues such as heart attacks or strokes. By taking blood thinners daily, blood can flow easily in the arteries and veins.

There are two main types of blood thinners used to prevent health issues. Antiplatelet drugs can be purchased over the counter. Aspirin, for example, is an antiplatelet drug that many people use daily to prevent blood cells from clumping.

Anticoagulants are another popular blood thinning agent. These drugs are designed to slow down the body’s ability to create clots and can be used in an outpatient setting. Anticoagulant medications include Coumadin or warfarin. These kinds of blood thinners are prescribed by a physician and can have side effects such as muscle weakness and bruising.

Because these medications are used to thin the blood, falls or other accidents can cause excessive bleeding. If this occurs it is important to receive medical attention as soon as possible. Wearing a medical ID for blood thinners is a secure way to access care, assured that critical information will be relayed to health professionals when it’s needed most.

Types of blood thinners 

There are two types of blood thinners — anticoagulants and antiplatelet drugs. Most blood thinners come in pill form. For immediate blood thinning, there are also injectable medications that a patient can use every few hours. Blood thinners are widely used to treat atrial fibrillation, deep vein thrombosis, lupus, and irregular heart rhythms.

Heparin and warfarin are some of the most commonly prescribed anticoagulants. Depending on a person’s diet, these medications can affect the ability to heal. Excessive amounts of vitamin K may cause increased bleeding from even the most basic of cuts.

Some common names of blood thinner medication

  • Aggrenox is essentially a stronger prescription aspirin. It is a combination of two medicines, aspirin and dipyridamole. The medication can help to reduce the risk of stroke in people who have had blood clots. It is also used for those who have had mini strokes.

  • Aspirin: Although there is an almost never ending flow of new blood thinner medications emerging, aspirin remains a commonly used preventative blood thinner.

  • Brilinta (ticagrelor) is typically prescribed following a heart attack and can be used in conjunction with aspirin. It has been proven effective at reducing the chance of recurring heart attacks in people who have had them before and the medication is thought to further reduce the risk of recurrent heart attacks with continued use.

  • Cilostazol is used to improve the flow of blood to the legs and can help assist with reducing the symptoms of intermittent claudication. Like some of the other blood thinner medications on our top ten list, Cilostazol is an antiplatelet medication, whereby it is used to prevent the platelets in the blood from clumping together.

  • Effient (prasugrel) prevents your platelets from clumping together into blood clots. This lowers the risk of heart attack, since a heart attack is caused by a clot forming in the vessels around your heart. After you get a stent in your heart, Effient (prasugrel) helps keep the stent open so that your heart continues to get enough blood.

  • Elequis (apixaban) lowers the risk of both blood clots and strokes, and is a relatively new drug that is thought to be a competitor to the side effects of Coumadin.

  • Heparin is used to treat and prevent blood clots caused by certain medical conditions or medical procedures. Heparin is also used before surgery to reduce the risk of blood clots.

  • Plavix (clopidogrel) works by preventing coagulation of the platelets in the blood. It is especially suited for people who have certain medical conditions and heart conditions. It is also used as a preventative tool against the formation of clots in persons who have had a heart attack or stroke.

  • Pradaxa (dabigatran) is a newer medication that is used primarily in people who have an arterial fibrillation. It is geared towards preventing blood clots and strokes.

  • Prasugrel may be used in conjunction with aspirin to prevent the formation of clots in people who have been treated with angioplasty,. Like aspirin, Prasugrel is an anti-platelet medication.

  • Warfarin (Coumadin): Coumadin is one of the most well known medications used to thin the blood. It is an anti coagulant that is also used in some cases to prevent heart disease.

  • Xarelto (rivaroxaban): Especially useful in recipients of hip replacements and knee replacements, Xarelto is a newcomer amongst blood thinner medications. It is also been approved for use in cases of DVT as well as pulmonary embolisms.

What to engrave on MedicAlert medical IDs for blood thinners:

MedicAlert offers free custom engraving on all our blood thinner bracelets and medical ID products. Engravings on medical IDs for blood thinners should include any critical medical information that can protect and save lives in an accident or medical emergency, for example:

  • Blood thinner medication you’re taking
  • Other current medications
  • Other medical conditions or allergies
medical IDs for blood thinners

Sample engraving. Consult our team if you need help engraving your medical ID for blood thinners.

What are blood thinner risks? 

Even life-saving medication can have risks. Excessive bleeding is a well-known risk when taking anticoagulants or antiplatelet drugs. Because blood-thinning agents can make some patients feel dizzy, falling is more likely to occur.

Common side effects of these drugs include weakness, fatigue, dizziness, heavy menstrual periods, nosebleeds, and prolonged bleeding. Alcohol consumption can exacerbate these symptoms and increase the risk of a fall. In the case of specific accidents or falls, internal bleeding can be a possibility. Frequent bruising is an indication that the body is able to bleed more easily and can be a sign of serious injury. 

Internal bleeding after an injury is an even more serious possibility for those on blood thinners. Head injuries can be especially problematic even if there’s minimal pain and should be examined as soon as possible.

Several drug interactions can occur. Diet plays a crucial role in how this medication impacts the body. Vitamin K can reduce effectiveness in certain anticoagulants. Blood thinner usage can affect the absorption of nutrients. Moderate the consumption of foods like cabbage, broccoli, kale, or spinach.

What Happens When You Stop Taking Blood Thinners? 

Blood thinners can be for long or short-term use. Stopping blood thinners for any reason can increase the risk of excessive blood clotting.

Depending on the type of blood thinner, some medications will lose their effects faster than others. Just because a patient stops taking anticoagulants or antiplatelet drugs doesn’t mean the medication is out of their system immediately. This can be misleading for many people.

Even after discontinuing a blood thinner, the risk for excessive bleeding continues until the medication has completely left the body. Popular drugs like warfarin will lose their effect within a few days after discontinuing use, but some others take longer to fully leave the system.

Abruptly stopping blood thinners is seldom advised. This can dramatically increase the risk of a blood clot to the brain. Even after tapering, patients must be careful to avoid any risk of falling. Rather a slow, tapering reduction of blood thinner medication is suggested in most cases.

How medical IDs  for blood thinners combined with MedicAlert  Membership provide peace of mind

  • We’re your voice:  If you can’t speak for yourself due to a medical emergency, your ID will speak for you – informing others about your blood thinner medications.

  • 24/7 emergency protection:  In an emergency, the MedicAlert team will relay all of your critical medical information to first responders, no matter where or when your emergency happens.

  • Always connected:  You should never be alone in an emergency. That’s why MedicAlert will reach out to your designated contacts if you are unable to do so.

  • Live with peace of mind and confidence:  MedicAlert will be there for you every step of the way. You’ll have the confidence and freedom to live your life with blood thinner medication. 
DISCLAIMER: THIS WEBSITE DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. The information in this article is presented for educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis and treatment. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified healthcare provider for any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.