What should I know about taking a novel anticoagulant if I am on warfarin?

Douglas E. Severance, MD
Family Medicine
If you are currently taking warfarin for atrial fibrillation, be sure to work with your doctor before you start taking a novel anticoagulant. While it may be tempting to stop taking your warfarin and start taking the novel anticoagulant immediately, you should not do this. Instead, your doctor will explain how to gradually reduce the dose of warfarin so that you can avoid serious reactions. Your doctor will also tell you when it is safe to start taking the novel anticoagulant to help prevent an ischemic stroke, which happens when the blood supply to the brain is blocked by a blood clot. Do not take warfarin and a novel anticoagulant at the same time.

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