Plavix is an anticoagulant that prevents blood platelets in your body from clotting, or coagulating. Preventing coagulation keeps blood clots from occurring and harming individuals with particular blood vessel or heart conditions. A common use of Plavix is prevention of clots after individuals suffer strokes or heart attacks. However, Plavix is also used for other functions not mentioned in this guide.
Important Information About Plavix
Plavix prevents blood coagulation (clotting), which prevents blood clots from forming in individuals with particular blood vessel or heart conditions. Since Plavix prevents blood coagulation, you may bleed more easily, even when the initial injury is slight. As a result, you should contact your doctor or immediately seek medical help if you cannot stop bleeding from an injury.
Bleeding may also occur inside the body, as in the digestive system (the stomach or the intestines). Inform your doctor immediately if you produce bloody or black stools, or are coughing blood or dark vomit, as these may be symptomatic of bleeding within the intestines or stomach.
When you intend to have surgery or dental work, inform the dentist or surgeon before any procedures that you use Plavix, as you may need to temporarily stop using Plavix for 5 days or more before a medical procedure; this prevents the risk of excessive blood loss.
Things to Discuss with a Physician
Plavix should not be taken if you are allergic to clopidogrel. Avoid Plavix if you have active bleeding in your body, such as from the brain or a stomach ulcer. Inform your doctor before taking Plavix if you have any drug allergies or conditions described above.
Plavix is not expected to harm unborn babies, but inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy during use of Plavix.
When Taking Plavix
Follow your prescription's instructions for consumption of Plavix. You should not take more medicine than your doctor recommends; nor should you consume Plavix for a longer time period than your doctor recommends. Follow your prescription label's directions.
Plavix should be taken with a full glass of water. Food may be taken or not taken with Plavix.
Remember that Plavix is an anticoagulant; it prevents blood clots. This prevention may also increase the likelihood of bleeding from minor injuries. Remember to seek medical attention or your doctor if you cannot stop bleeding.
When you intend to have surgery or dental work, inform the dentist or surgeon before any procedures that you use Plavix, as you may be required to temporarily stop using Plavix for 5 days or more before a medical procedure; this is to prevent the risk of excessive blood loss.
Blood work should be performed on a regular basis to ensure Plavix is not causing harm to your body; be sure to attend all scheduled visits to your doctor.
Plavix should be stored away from heat and moisture at room temperature.
In Case of Missed Dosage
If you miss a dose of Plavix, you should take the dose you missed once you remember. If you are close to taking your next regularly scheduled dose, do not try to make up the dose you missed; simply take the next dose of Plavix when regularly scheduled. You should not attempt to make up missed doses by consuming extra doses of Plavix.
In Case of Overdose
If you believe you have used too much of Plavix, please seek immediate medical attention. Symptoms of overdosing on Plavix may include bloody stools or vomit, a sense of exhaustion or an inability to catch one's breath, and vomiting.
Things to Avoid when Taking Plavix
While taking Plavix, avoid non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin, without first consulting your doctor. Common NSAIDs include Motrin, Aleve, Advil, and numerous other drugs. While using Plavix, you should also refrain from engaging in activities and sports that may result in bruising, bleeding, or other blood-related injuries. Similarly, be particularly careful to keep from getting cuts or nicks while shaving or brushing your teeth. You should not drink alcohol while using Plavix, as alcohol potentially increases the risk of bleeding within the digestive system (e.g., the intestines and stomach).