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Alternate Tuesday afternoons by appointment
There are a number of conditions when warfarin is of benefit and increasingly warfarin is being prescribed. The commonest reason for this nowadays is when someone develops atrial fibrillation and the heart beat is irregular.
This irregularity increases the possibility of a stroke. The risk of a stroke is decreased by prescribing an anticoagulant which in most cases will be warfarin, but the risk of a bleed is increased. Because of these dangers for some patients aspirin is used which has also been found to be of value. Regular monitoring of the anticoagulant effects of warfarin is vital to avoid these potential complications. Diet and other drugs can have a profound effect upon the INR. The INR is a ratio of normal clotting time to anticoagulated blood. Again depending upon the reason for the anticoagulation, this ratio should ideally be between 2 and 3 times as long as normal blood.
The local hospitals have regular clinics but this requires our patients to attend outpatients. Some 60 or more of our patients attend the practice rather than the hospital. If you attend a hospital clinic and wish to transfer to the practice, let the practice manage know or mention it to your doctor at your next visit. The clinic is run as an outreach clinic by one of the anticoagulant hospital staff. Like the hospital, your blood is tested while you wait and you will be given a further follow up appointment and a change of the dose of warfarin if necessary.
If you are prescribed warfarin by your doctor, before we will authorise a repeat prescription you will be required to give the INR and the date when this was done. Again because of the potential danger of interactions, the doctors rather than the reception staff, print out the prescription personally.
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