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Coumadin – uses, health risks, and side effects at

Thursday, August 23, 2018 by

Coumadin is an anticoagulant or blood thinner. The drug helps reduce the formation of blood clots, and it is prescribed to treat or prevent blood clots in veins or arteries.

Coumadin is used to reduce the risk of stroke, heart attack, or other serious conditions.

Coumadin’s generic name is warfarin, and its other brand names include Jantoven.

Known health risks or side effects of Coumadin

Coumadin may cause common side effects that are related to abnormal bleeding. These include:

  • Bleeding from cuts that take a long time to stop
  • Bleeding gums
  • Coughing up blood
  • Heavier than normal menstrual/vaginal bleeding
  • Nosebleeds
  • Pink or brown urine
  • Red or black stools
  • Unusual bruising (e.g., bruises that grow in size or unexplainable bruises
  • Vomiting blood or materials that look like coffee grounds

You may require immediate medical attention if you experience severe side effects such as:

  • Purple toes syndrome – Symptoms usually include pain and toes that turn purple or a dark color.
  • Skin tissue death – May occur when blood clots form and block blood flow to an area of the body. Symptoms may include changes in color or temperature in any area of the body or pain.

List of organs that might be affected by Coumadin

An overdose of Coumadin may result in excessive bleeding or an allergic reaction. Signs of an allergic reaction may include difficulty breathing; hives; or the swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat.

If you think you’ve taken too much of this drug, consult a healthcare professional. If your symptoms are severe, go to the nearest emergency room immediately.

Food items or nutrients that have similar effects to Coumadin

The following foods or nutrients have similar effects to Coumadin:

  • Cayenne peppers – Cayenne peppers have a potent blood-thinning effect on the body because it is full of salicylates. Aside from thinning the blood, cayenne peppers can help lower blood pressure and boost circulation.
  • Cinnamon – Cinnamon and a close cousin, cassia, both contain coumarin, a chemical that functions as a potent anticoagulant. Once consumed with cinnamon and cassia, coumarin can help lower blood pressure and relieve inflammation due to arthritis and other inflammatory conditions. Take note that the long-term consumption of cinnamon, like cinnamon-based breads and teas, may result in liver damage.
  • Ginger – Ginger, which belongs in the same family as turmeric, also has salicylate, an acid found in various plants. Acetylsalicylic acid, derived from salicylate and often called aspirin, may help prevent a stroke. Foods that contain salicylate, e.g., avocados, some berries, chilies, and cherries, may also prevent blood clots.
  • Turmeric – The spice turmeric gives curry dishes its distinctive yellow color. It contains curcumin, a curative ingredient that affects platelets to prevent clot formation.

Treatment and management options for the side effects of Coumadin

To prevent the side effects associated with Coumadin, like nosebleeds:

  1. Try to remain calm and sit up straight. Lean forward slightly.
  2. Lean your head forward. Don’t tilt your head back because this will make you swallow the blood.
  3. Pinch your nostrils together and apply direct pressure using your thumb and index finger for about 10 minutes. Time this properly.
  4. Spit out any blood in your mouth. Swallowing blood can make you vomit.

This technique can help stop simple nosebleeds.

Where to learn more


Coumadin is an anticoagulant or blood thinner. The drug helps reduce the formation of blood clots, and it is prescribed to treat or prevent blood clots in veins or arteries.

Coumadin may cause common side effects that are related to abnormal bleeding like bleeding gums or nosebleeds.

An overdose of the drug may excessive bleeding or an allergic reaction.

Cayenne pepper, cinnamon, ginger, and turmeric have similar effects to Coumadin.

Sources include: 1 2


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