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Healtheuniversity > English > Cardiac College > Treat Heart Disease > Heart Medicines > Anticoagulants



  • Helps prevent harmful blood clots from forming in your blood vessels and heart
  • Can lower the risk of stroke in patients with artificial heart valves or atrial fibrillation
  • Helps to treat clots in case of pulmonary embolism (a blood clot in your lung) and deep vein thrombosis (a blood clot in a vein deep inside your body)


  • Decreases blood clotting

Potential Side Effects

  • Nosebleeds
  • Bleeding from your gums
  • Unusual bleeding while shaving
  • Easy bruising
  • Bleeding ulcers [may be noticed by black tarry poo (stool) or vomit that appears bloody or looks like coffee grounds]

Common Names

  • Apixaban (Eliquis®)
  • Dabigatran (Pradaxa®)
  • Edoxaban (Lixiana®)
  • Rivaroxaban (Xarelto®)
  • Warfarin (Coumadin®)


For some anticoagulants, your doctor will send you for weekly or monthly blood tests to ensure you are taking the correct doses.

Foods rich in vitamin K, such as leafy green vegetables, may interfere with some anticoagulants. Speak with your doctor about these foods. It is likely you can eat them, but you will need to avoid sudden changes in the amount you eat each day.

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