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Coumadin®/Warfarin B-SAFE Campaign Cheat Sheet by

campaign     healthcare     warfarin     coumadin     b-safe


The B-SAFE Campaign encourages patients to know the medica­tions they are taking and to know why they are taking them. What is Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin? Coumadin® is the most frequently used blood thinning medication on the market. Warfarin is the generic name and Coumadin® is the brand name product.

What does Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin do for you?

Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin is used to help prevent harmful blood clots from forming in the body. When you get injured, your body’s clotting system causes certain blood proteins (called clotting factors) to work together to form a clot. Some people refer to medica­tions like Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin as “blood thinners,” but these medica­tions do not actually change the thickness of your blood. Instead, Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin slows down the formation of clots by lowering some of the clotting factors in your blood.

Not all clots are bad. When you cut yourself, your body forms a clot to stop bleeding. Unfort­una­tely, harmful blood clots are frequent in patients who have diseases of the blood vessels, heart or are limited in their mobility. Harmful blood clots can increase your risk of heart attack, stroke, blood clots in the lungs, and other serious medical problems. Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin helps reduce the likelihood of these outcomes by limiting the body’s ability to form blood clots.

BRING a list of all your medica­tions

BRING a list of all your medica­tions with you wherever you go:
Many medica­tions can interact with Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin, therefore it is important to have a complete medication list to present to your healthcare provider. Make sure that your medication list is:
Includes everything that you take, including overth­e-c­ounter medica­tions as well as vitamins,
seasonal medica­tion, and herbal supple­ments
Includes the reasons why you are taking each medication

STANDARD dose, time, and monitoring

Medication use should be standard and consis­tent.
Know your Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin dosage, as prescribed by your doctor
Take your Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin at the same time each day
If you miss a dose, contact your doctor
Complete INR/PT blood testing as scheduled

ADVERSE effects

Know the side effects of Coumadin®/ warfarin, as well as other medica­tions and supple­ments that can interact with it. Bleeding is the main side effect of Coumadin®/ warfarin.
Talk to your healthcare provider, doctor or pharmacist before starting any new medica­tions
including over-t­he-­counter medica­tions as well as vitamins, seasonal medica­tion, and herbal supple­ments
Talk to your healthcare provider or doctor about your eating habits. Some foods, such as leafy greens, may cause harmful intera­ctions
Avoid alcohol

FALL and injury precau­tions

Internal bleeding can result from falls and injuries while on Coumadin®/ warfarin. Seek medical attention immedi­ately if you:
Bump your head


While on Coumad­in®­/wa­rfarin, seek medica­lat­tention immedi­ately if you notice:
Any unusual bruising or bleeding
Changes in your stools (e.g. dark stools)
Experience difficulty in breathing

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