Anticoagulation therapy is a course of drug therapy in which medications are administered to a patient to slow the rate at which the patient's blood clots. Anticoagulants are often referred to as “blood thinners,” which is misleading because these drugs do not “thin” the blood. Anticoagulants inhibit the formation of clotting agents so that the blood cannot clot as easily.
Patients taking anticoagulant medications need information about these drugs so they can work with their physician and pharmacist to reduce the risk of complications. It is important to learn how these drugs should be used, their possible side effects and when to seek medical attention should an episode of excessive bleeding occur. In fact, recent studies show that patients who participate in an anticoagulation management program:
The Summa Health Anticoagulation Management Service (SAMS) is a nationally recognized Center of Excellence in Anticoagulation. SAMS strives to improve patient outcomes by partnering with physicians to offer patients additional support and assistance during their course of anticoagulation therapy. This care is not meant to replace the care offered by your physician. It supplements the care you already receive.
If you have been prescribed an anticoagulation medication (such as Coumadin®/Warfarin or newer agents, such as Xarelto®/Rivaroxaban or Eliquis®/Apixaban), talk to your physician about getting a referral to the Summa Health Anticoagulation Management Service Program located at Summa Health System – Akron Campus, 95 Arch, Suite G50.
To learn more, view answers to frequently asked Anticoagulation therapy questions below or make an appointment today.
The Summa Health Anticoagulation Management Service has a track record of low bleeding and clotting complication occurrence compared to the national average. Our team provides you with:
While this therapy is important, it is not without risks. There are many drugs (both prescription and nonprescription) that can interact with anticoagulant medications. Eating certain foods also can interfere with the effectiveness of anticoagulant medications by increasing or decreasing the ability of blood to clot – which increases the risk for developing a blood clot or causing excessive bleeding. Careful monitoring by a healthcare professional is required to avoid bleeding or clotting complications.
While there is no INR monitoring for some of the newer anticoagulant medications, they still require monitoring by a healthcare provider to ensure you don’t have any bleeding or clotting complications. The Summa Health Anticoagulation Management Service clinic offers monitoring programs for these agents that consist of office visits every 3-12 months, phone calls, and checking necessary labs when needed.
Newer anticoagulant medications include:
During your initial visit to the Summa Health Anticoagulation Management Service clinic:
We will share information about your progress and provide a status update to your physician on an as-needed basis.