What Is Plavix (Clopidogrel)?
Plavix is a prescription drug that is used to prevent heart attacks and strokes and lower the risks of death in patients who have already had heart attacks, strokes, unstable angina.
The active ingredient of Plavix, clopidogrel, doesn't let platelets stick together and form a thrombus that will stick to the vessel wall. It's a well-known fact that when the thrombus sticks to the vessel, it restricts normal blood flow or even totally blocks it (if the vessel is small), but when the thrombus dislodges, the consequences may be very dangerous. So, when there is a risk of blood clot forming, doctors prescribe Plavix in order to prevent severe cardiovascular diseases provoked by this problem.
Side Effects Of Plavix (Clopidogrel)
Plavix can cause different side effects. Some of them are not dangerous and don't require medical help but some can be life-threatening.
According to various studies, the most common Plavix side effects are:
- Chest pain
- Allergic reactions
- Bruises on the skin
- Abdominal pain
The most dangerous side effect of Plavix is bleeding. As Plavix is a blood thinner, it may provoke bleeding even from a small injury. When you take Plavix, you may notice that you get bruised more easily or you have nose bleeding or it takes more time to stop bleeding. If you noticed some of these reactions, inform your doctor immediately. But you should react quickly if you noticed:
- Blood in your urine
- Bruises that appear without reason and grow larger
- Vomiting with blood
- Red stools
All these symptoms are very dangerous and require immediate treatment!
How To lower The Risk Of Plavix Side Effects?
Side effects Plavix provokes can be minimized if you take this drug under control of your doctor and inform him/her if something goes wrong.
The risk of side effects doubles if you have these diseases or disorders:
- Current bleeding
- Hypersensitivity to some component of Plavix
- Kidney disease
Pregnancy and breast-feeding is a contraindication for the treatment with Plavix.
You should know that some drugs interact with Plavix, so this combination can double the risk of side effects. While taking Plavix, avoid using the following drugs:
- Warfarin and other blood thinners
- Stomach acid reducers
- Certain antidepressants (SSRIs, SNRIs)
- Antifungal drugs
- HIV drugs
If you don't have contraindications and if you don't take any drugs, your risks will be lower but still they can't be completely reduced as all reactions of the body are individual and can't be foreseen.
Plavix may cause side effects but if you cooperate well with your doctor and don't hide anything from him/her, the risks will be lower.