I'll try again as I do not see my post.

Thanks to all your support I am not quite so scared about starting warfarin and have an appointment at my doctor's in three weeks time to initiate. I have been told I will be started on 3mg and tested once a week. I thought it was important to be tested more than that in the first week. Can anyone tell me what to expect at this first appointment and also how often they were tested to start with? Thanks to you all for taking the time to help me.

15 Replies

  • Starting on such a low dose it will take some time (weeks ) for you to get into range so weekly testing should be fine. I don't know why they do it this way now as when I started ten years ago I had a large loading dose . daily testing and was in range in a week or so. Much more satisfactory in my view but times change.


  • I think that was the dose that I started on and I also had weekly testing to start with. Either they will take a drop of blood from your finger on to a strip and the machine will confirm you INR or a blood sample will be taken from your arm and sent to a laboratory for checking. You will be given a YELLOW book in which your results will be recorded. You need to keep it with you for all medical and dental visits.

    Hopefully warfarin will cause you no problems. It will be your security blanket. The little tablets taste absolutely vile. Swallow with lots of water

  • Hi cmjoyce

    You'll be fine, are you going to your GP or to the hospital anti coag clinic?, generally the nurse will chat to you about warfarin, and about diet and then give you your yellow book and some usually 1mg 3mg and 5mg tablets, the reason you get them all is so that you can always take the right dosage.

    Personally I have a little chart on the wall in the kitchen as as I take the tabs I write on the chart what I have taken and also mark off my other drugs.

    Weekly is usual at first, 3mg is a small dose to start so you'll be lucky if your INR moves at all in the first week, but they take you up really slowly nowadays, not sure why

    I've heard Jenny about tasts a number of times, I must have no taste buds at all, as I have actually crunched one by accident once and it didn't taste at all bad and I hold them in my mouth for a long time before I grab the water to wash them down.

    You will be fine


  • Same with me - I take my 9mg of Warfarin in the evening with a cup of coffee and quite look forward to the taste (and texture).


  • I started on 3mg / day, with weekly tests. Gradually built up over time. Took some while to get my INR in range and then the tests went monthly apart from the odd blip, then back to weekly for while etc.


  • Hi,I started on warfarin the beginning of July and have just got my INR up to 2.3. I haven't really changed my diet except I now mainly eat iceberg lettuce in my salads as this is supposed to be low in vit. k. I was really apprehensive about starting it too. I was tested once a week at first, last week the computer system put me on once a month but have asked to be tested every 2 weeks. Good luck with it all. Kath

  • I started Warfarin in March of this year with 5mg daily. 1st test (Coaguchek at GP surgery) after 4days, INR was 3.3! Dropped to 3mg; 2 days later INR still 3.3. Stayed on 3mg; 1 week later INR of 3.6. Computer at surgery said stay on 3mg. INR still 3.6 the week after. Computer said 3mg again but overridden by GP who suggested 2.5mg. Since then INR has been pretty stable, usually between 2.2 & 2.5. 8 weeks between tests at present; any bleeds (normal cuts and grazes) take a little longer to clot but not enough to cause problems. Bruises again take longer to disappear but not worryingly so.

  • I started on Warfarin 11/12 years ago and was started this way. It must depend on your the policy oy your health provider. It took me a few weeks to get in range.

  • It may also depend on the urgency? When I started it was for my first ablation and I had to be in range for three months with only four to do it. This was before the link with stroke and AF was noted. I am on 12 week (84 days) tests as I am so stable. Some people would worry about what happens during that 12 weeks but life is too short. If the clinic says it is OK then I have to accept that and find something else to worry about. lol


  • Hadn't thought of the ' urgency ' factor -- you are no doubt right there Bob. What happens if you are on the NOAC's prior to CV? How do they know if you are sufficiently anti coagulated ? I feel there must be a simple answer here that I have missed out on !


  • As I understand it, NOACs kick in and out faster than Warfarin. They work in a different way and so you don't need to test to determine whether they are working or not - they just are! :)

  • OK Chris , thought it had to be something like that . I will stay with Warfarin , like the reassurance.

  • I have been on it since 1992 and I started on a high dose and had a test every day for about a week and then 3 days and then a week and the fortnightly once stable I go 3 months but because of the fact I am on 14 scripts and my conditions throw a spanner in now and again like at the moment I am going every fortnight. Last 4 test showed 2.4,3.8,2.8,2.4 I am now on 4.5/ 5.0 alt days My range is 2.5-3.5 3.0 ideal Which is higher than most people, but I am not most people ;)

    Be well

  • Sounds like I got it done the old fashioned way, they put me on 5mg to start and tested me every day for a few days. That was in hospital though, so they probably wanted it done ASAP so they could discharge me. I'm on 3.5mg now and my INR has been 2.6-3.2, next test is Wednesday and that will be a fortnight, so I hope my INR hasn't gone berserk.

  • For your information, if you decide to purchase an ID bracelet from The ID Band Company, and give our code: 990487 they will kindly donate 12% of the purchase price to AF Association. This will also be highlighted in the April 2014 newsletter.

    This is info that we were given and hopefully the code still applies. If you decide to wear a Warfarin alert bracelet the ID Band Company have a huge selection of types colours and costs.

    Don't worry too much - you really will look back and wonder why.

You may also like...