Blood thinners - clopidogrel; Antiplatelet therapy - clopidogrel; Thienopyridines
Platelets are small cells in your blood that your body uses to form clots and stop bleeding. If you have too many platelets or your platelets stick together too much, you are more likely to form clots. This clotting can take place on the inside of your arteries and lead to heart attack or stroke.
Antiplatelet drugs work to make your platelets less sticky and thereby help prevent blood clots from forming in your arteries.
Antiplatelet drugs may be used to:
Your health care provider will choose which one of these drugs are best for your problem. At times, you may be asked to take low dose aspirin along with one of these drugs.
Side effects of this medicine may include:
Before you start taking these medicines, tell your provider if:
There are a number of other possible side effects, depending on which drug you are prescribed. For example:
This medicine is taken as a pill. Your provider may change your dose from time to time.
Take this medicine with food and plenty of water to reduce side effects. You may need to stop taking clopidogrel before you have surgery or dental work. DO NOT just stop taking your medicine without first talking with your provider.
Talk with your provider before taking any of these drugs:
DO NOT take other drugs that may have aspirin or ibuprofen in them before talking with your provider. Read the labels on cold and flu medicines. Ask what other medicines are safe for you to take for aches and pains, colds, or the flu.
If you have any type of procedure scheduled, you may need to stop these drugs 5 to 7 days before hand. However, always check with your provider first about whether it is safe to stop.
Tell your provider if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed. Women in the later stages of pregnancy should not take clopidogrel. Clopidogrel can be passed to infants through breast milk.
Talk with your provider if you have liver or kidney disease.
If you miss a dose:
Store these drugs and all other medicines in a cool, dry place. Keep them where children cannot get to them.
Call if you have any of these side effects and they do not go away:
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Powers WJ, Rabinstein AA, Ackerson T, et al; 2018 Guidelines for the early management of patients with acute ischemic stroke: a guideline for healthcare professionals from the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association. Stroke. 2018;49(3):e46-e110. PMID: 29367334 www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29367334.BACK TO TOP
Review Date: 7/25/2018
Reviewed By: Michael A. Chen, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Cardiology, Harborview Medical Center, University of Washington Medical School, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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