Coumadin

When and How to Take the Drug

General considerations for those taking Coumadin include the following:
 
  • This medication comes in tablet form. It is also available as an injection, although this form is rarely used.
     
  • Coumadin is usually taken by mouth once a day.
     
  • Although it does not matter what time of day you take this medication, be sure to take it at the same time each day.
     
  • If necessary, the tablets can be broken in half. However, it is best if this can be avoided, since even tiny variations in the dosage can cause problems.
     
  • You can take Coumadin with food or on an empty stomach.
     
  • For the medication to work properly, it must be taken as directed.
     

Dosing Information

The recommended dose of Coumadin will vary, depending on how you respond to the medication (this is monitored using regular blood tests). As is always the case, do not adjust your dose unless your healthcare provider specifically instructs you to do
 
(Click Coumadin Dosage for more information.)
 

Potential Side Effects

Just like any medicine, Coumadin can cause side effects. The side effects of this medication can be dangerous. The risk of most dangerous side effects can be reduced by careful monitoring.
 
Possible side effects of Coumadin include but are not limited to:
 
  • Bleeding, including dangerous internal bleeding
  • Easy bruising
  • "Purple toe syndrome"
  • Hair loss.
     
(Click Coumadin Side Effects to learn more, including potentially serious side effects you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.)
 
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD; Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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