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What are Anticoagulants?

Anticoagulants are medicines that reduce the ability of the blood to clot. There are a number of different types of anticoagulants, each with a different mechanism of action, although they all work by inhibiting various pathways of blood coagulation.

Anticoagulants may also be called "blood thinners"; however, they don't really thin the blood, just prolong the time it takes for your blood to clot. Anticoagulants are similar in their action to antiplatelets and thrombolytic drugs, which also act on coagulation pathways.

Anticoagulants are usually used to treat conditions with a high risk of blood clots such as atrial fibrillation, deep vein thrombosis (DVT), myocardial infarction (heart attack), pulmonary embolism, and stroke.

Types of Anticoagulants

Please refer to the drug classes listed below for further information.