How Do You Treat Thrombosis?
The treatment of thrombosis is essential because blood clots curb the circulation of blood in the body. The main goal of treating thrombosis include-
- Prevention of the blood clots from getting bigger.
- Prevention of further formation of blood clots.
- Prevention of pulmonary embolism by restraining the blood clot to travel towards the lung
- Prevention of post-thrombotic syndrome.
Do Blood Thinners Help in the Treatment of Thrombosis?
Blood thinners are essentially anticoagulants. It must be noted that blood thinners are used as the most common form of treatment for deep vein thrombosis. Blood thinners prevent the blood clots from growing big and also stop the formation of new blood clots. Nevertheless, it is important to know that unlike its name, blood thinners cannot thin the consistency of the blood and dissolve the existing clot so formed. Although there are numerous blood thinners available which can be prescribed by the doctor, few of the names of blood thinners include:
What are the Most Common Forms of Blood Thinners and How Are They Used in the Treatment of Thrombosis?
Heparin: One of the common anticoagulant or blood thinner for thrombosis includes heparin. The doctor in the hospital may inject heparin into the vein of the patient directly at first. The patient then may have to take shots of the drug at home once or twice daily as directed by the doctor. Before the heparin in injected through IV, the patient will have to undergo blood tests. The patient then does not need further blood tests if he is taking shots of low molecular weight heparin under the skin.
Warfarin: Another common blood thinner the doctors are seen to prescribe for thrombosis is Warfarin. It comes in form of a pill which needs to be taken once a day. Warfarin can be taken even when the patient is still on heparin. The dose may extend for three to six months according to what the doctor may feel right. While the patient is on Warfarin, he needs to undergo regular blood tests as advised by the doctor to make sure that the right amount of the anticoagulant enters in his system. This is because too little of Warfarin will not help in preventing clots while too much of the medicine leads to increased bleeding.
What are the Side Effects of Blood Thinners in General?
While most of the drugs used in any form of treatment have its own set of side effects, proper precautions may help in getting rid of the side effects. Blood thinners for thrombosis may have a risk of interacting with other medicines taken by the patient. It can also interact with vitamins. Warfarin is essentially known to interact with foods rich in vitamin K. Thus the blood tests are done to make sure everything is normal. It is also important to inform the doctor if the patient is pregnant. This is because anticoagulants are known to cause birth defects. The patient may be prescribed some other form of drugs in case of pregnancy.
What are the Other Methods of Treating Thrombosis?
Sometimes it may happen so that the doctor may use some other method to remove the blood clots in thrombosis along with the blood thinners or even in the absence of them. Such techniques include-
- Directed Thrombolysis - This includes direct clot bursting by quickly breaking up the clot and restoring the blood flow. It is done by inserting a catheter at the tip of the clot to get rid of it.
- Surgery - Vena-Cava filter and Venous thrombectomy are the two common form of surgical procedure used by doctors to get rid of the blood clots.