Anticoagulants are a type of drug that reduces the body's ability to form clots in the blood.
When you cut yourself platelets begin to work and help your blood to clot and stop you bleeding.
If you are healthy and your heart is working normally you are likely to have a regular resting heart rate of around 60 to 90 beats per minute.
If you have an artificial heart valve (prosthetic valve) you will need anticoagulation therapy for the rest of your lifetime to prevent clots forming. Anticoagulation is effective in preventing clot formation on the artificial surfaces of the valve.
A deep vein thrombosis (DVT) occurs when a blood clot forms in a vein. A DVT usually develops in the calf, but it sometimes also occurs in the thigh, and occasionally in other deep veins in your body.
A pulmonary embolism (PE) is a blood clot in the lung. It usually comes from smaller vessels in the leg. Clots forming in the legs are called deep vein thrombosis (DVT).
Recently, the National Institute for Clinical Excellence has issued guidance on the use of antibiotics for valve patients to prevent endocarditis when having dental or other interventional procedures. The new guidance states that antibiotics are no longer necessary.
AntiCoagulation Europe is committed to the prevention of thrombosis and is campaigning to make sure that proper risk assessment is performed on admission to hospital and if appropriate preventative treatment (prophylaxis) given to prevent deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism. Please see below for more information.
The definition of thrombosis is the formation of a blood clot, a thrombus, in the cardiovascular system. Depending on where it occurs, it can be differentiated between a venous thrombosis (blood clot in the veins) or an arterial thrombosis (a blood clot in the arteries).