Blood thinners

Blood thinners are medicines that prevent blood clots. They do not actually thin the blood but increase the time it takes to form a blood clot. They also help prevent existing blood clots from becoming larger. They may be used to prevent or to treat certain blood vessel, heart, or lung conditions.

The term "blood thinner" describes different types of medicines, including anticoagulants and antiplatelets.

Examples of anticoagulants include:

  • apixaban (Eliquis).
  • dabigatran (Pradaxa).
  • rivaroxaban (Xarelto).
  • warfarin (Coumadin).

Examples of antiplatelets include:

  • aspirin (Bayer, Bufferin, Ecotrin).
  • clopidogrel (Plavix).
  • prasugrel (Effient).
  • ticagrelor (Brilinta).

Current as of: March 28, 2016

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Jeffrey S. Ginsberg, MD - Hematology