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What are the side effects of heparin sodium?

The most common side effect from taking heparin is pain and irritation around the site where the medication was injected. It's also not uncommon to experience some hair loss while taking the drug. Because heparin makes it easier to bleed and harder to stop bleeding, other side effects may be a sign of a very serious medical condition such as internal bleeding. Direct signs of this include: any signs of unexpected bleeding or bruising; bloody vomit, or vomit that looks like it has coffee grounds in it; stool that is either black and tarry or has bright red blood in it; bloody urine; coughing that produces blood; nosebleeds; discolored skin that becomes purple or black; bleeding gums when brushing or flossing; and bleeding more than usual during menstruation, or unexpected vaginal bleeding.

You should also contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following side effects: pain or tender swelling in the leg or calf, or a feeling of numbness and a change of color in the hands, fingers, and toes; pain in the chest, shoulders, neck, jaw, or lower back, or severe pain at the site of injection; confusion, dizziness, slurred speech, vision problems, or severe headaches; feeling numb on one side of your body; fever, chills, nausea, or stomach swelling; an itchy or burning sensation on the bottoms of your feet or elsewhere; hoarseness; experiencing a painful, hours-long erection; and difficulty breathing.

You should also become familiar with the signs of an allergic reaction to the medication, such as the appearance of a rash or hives on the skin, swelling around the mouth and face, and difficulty breathing.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.