warfarin: I am on warfarin for life and... - British Heart Fou...

British Heart Foundation
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I am on warfarin for life and i keep getting a feeling that i don't want to be taking them. i know its probably the same for most medications we are on but warfarin in my mind seems particularly nasty . Anyone else have this feeling .

11 Replies

What is it about warfarin that you don't like?

Like you I'm on warfarin for life, been on it for the last 6 years since having a mechanical heart valve fitted X

I've never had any problems with warfarin, do you have a specific concern?

There's an anti-medication attitude that seems fairly common on this forum. Many people seem to measure their progress against the yardstick of stopping their medicines. It's as if they'll never regard themselves as acceptably healthy unless and until they're medicine free.

A further twist to this comes with people who believe that lifestyle and medication are somehow in competition with each other, and if you're genuinely making lifestyle changes then medication is unnecessary.

I'm not qualified to tell anyone how to live with their illness, in any event it would be foolish to be prescriptive as each individual probably needs a plan that's every bit as unique to them as their own DNA!

Personally I'm extremely grateful for the benefits of modern medication. I believe medication will play a fundamental role (alongside the significant life style changes that I'm implementing) in delivering my objective of another twenty plus years of healthy life. Furthermore I hope that over that period new medication will arrive that are even more effective.

I have to take a blood thinner but was put on Apixaban and felt relieved because I had heard comments about Warfarin. I understand that for some people it may have to be Warfarin but it's worth checking why that one. I don't have to have regular blood tests for which I am grateful. I've only been taking it for 6 months but notice no sidd effects other than a little bit of a nose bleed each day which is not a problem. Hope you get some advice.


I too am on life long warfarin because I had a mechanical valve fitted last year. There is no other option, other blood thinners such as apixiban are not suitable for mechanical valves. Maybe something will be found in the future but not currently.

It would be lovely not to take warfarin but it is not an option.

Yes with warfarin you need to have blood tests which is a nuisance, we also need to be careful about not drinking too much and some dietary stuff. Yes there are potential problems with bleeding and bruising but overall personally would rather take the warfarin than deal with the dire and fatal consequences.

Do you self test? I find self testing makes a huge difference as I am not tied to the practice. I had to purchase the machine (approx£300) and the GP provides the rest.

As suggested have a conversation with your GP but above all don't stop the warfarin.


I always find it interesting that folks will load themselves up with vitamins and supplements thinking it’s the healthiest thing in the world for them. Yet most of these pills have never been tested to rule their true effectiveness nor whether they help or harm the body.

Look at medications as vitamins for your body. They have been rigorously tested and shown to actually help.

Sometimes I wonder if it’s denial and anger of having a health problem we did not expect much less want.

We all share the frustration of filling the pill box every week.

Why anyone would not take medication that is keeping then alive and kicking is beyond me .listen to the replies so far thay are right .i have been on warfarin for45 years .avr replacment and would love to be on it for another 45 years.hope is a great thing.if you are stable on it see your gp about self monitering and dosing as i do the machine cost 300 pounds money well spent

Ps seeyour gp first to make sure they will supply the test strips

Pps you have been given another chance in life take it

I was on warfarin for over 5 years and had no problems taking it. Recently my cardiologist switched me onto another blood thinner namely Dabigabtran. The advantage of being on Dabigabtran is that I no longer need to have regular blood tests.

I like taking warfarin. I look at as like snakes and ladders. I have managed to get the interval up to two months, a record. Sadly i have a chest infection, munching antibiotics, so need an inr test. I bet i have to start again with a week interval

Dear yogisart,

I know exactly what you are saying...I am on warfarin for the rest of my life and I only started to take it 2 months ago.

For ppl that are new on warfarin I guess it can be difficult as it requires a lot of tests and it interacts with certain food etc.

My INR is still not in range so I Have blood tests every 3 days.

I am also vegeterian, so you can imagine how hard it is with food interactions.

In my mind I often think of warfarin as a rat poison....but at the end of the day it is our life saver so we can only be grateful.

Hopefully, with the progress in medicine, they will soon fond something that it is easier to manage

Best wishes

Nobody likes to take tablets and they do have side effects. But most of your problems will will be caused by a defective heart.

I have been taking warfarin for the last 4 years since having a mechanical aortic valve replacement. In that time it has fluctuated many times as everything affects your INR! Sunshine, exercise, illness, alcohol, travel etc. I am only 50 so have many more years to go taking warfarin. I have my own machine and test myself weekly which helps take away the worries of not having ideal INR levels. I have recently seen my heart surgeon and there is currently no alternative to warfarin for mechanical heart valve patients. Hope this helps.

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