Warfarin vs Heparin/Fragmin 10,000 units

Hi Everyone,

Really hoping someone can help. I was started on Fragmin for a trial to see if symptoms improved. They have, I would say around 30 percent but was hoping for more. In the 4 weeks that I have been taking it, I have had 2 pretty bad headaches and that was the one thing I thought would definitely disappear. I've been told to stay on this until after an upcoming op in January. After that I have been told to try warfarin as this can make your blood thinner? And should improve my symptoms more?

Has anyone else had better symptom relief/improvement on warfarin compared to heparin? Do some people respond better to warfarin and others heparin? I have been told I would need an INR of around 3.5.

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14 Replies

  • Hello all.

    My experience has been the other way, I'm much better of Fragmin than on Warfarin. The dose of Fragmin needs to be the correct one for your body weight; I need 15,000IUs for my weight.


  • Hi Dave,

    Thank you for responding, Professor Hughes did mention I might need a higher dose of fragmin but think he wants me to try warfarin next. Do you know the dosing for the different weights? I'm 10 stone, I think thats about 64kg,

    Thanks again Rosie.

  • There should be a weight/dose chart in the Fragmin box. Two tables I think, I use the higher one. x

  • Ok great, will have a look, thanks.

  • I think the real issue is wether or not you can have a stable INR on warfarin if you can then that's great and it may work out well for you. Some people however struggle to maintain their INR in a therapeutic range and when that happens it can become dangerous because of the risk of clots. In that case heparin is a better option.

  • Hi APsnotFab,

    Thanks for responding, do you think if I was one of the 'lucky' ones that could stay in the therapeutic range, could Warfarin then be better than Fragmin? Or is it just not that simple!!

    Sorry for asking another question.

  • I don't think its as simple as that. Also there is a cost element attached to all of this and your Doctor may well not give you a choice. Warfarin is much cheaper so after your trial of heparin it is normal to be switched to warfarin unless there is a very good reason not too.

    Don't worry about the questions thats why we are here. X

  • Thank you for responding again, the reason I'm so interested in the two's differences is because I'm 31 and desperate to be well enough to have/look after a baby. I'm allowed to stay on Fragmin because they know I would like to try for a baby after my op. But as it stands, my improvement so far from the Fragmin is not enough to do this, so was wondering if I would feel well enough on warfarin. Is it fair to say most people feel better on Fragmin/Heparin? But due to the cost they're not allowed to be on it long term?

    Sorry to be annoying but another question!! Did you find when you first started Heparin/Warfarin your symptoms continued to improve even more overtime? Xx

  • Im wondering if those of us who feel better on Fragmin just suit it better for a couple of reasons. 1st it keeps us more stable, especially if on warfarin we had been experiencing a very unstable INR with corresponding symptoms. 2nd it works completely differently to warfarin and that just suits some people better.

    Yes there is a cost element but if that is the best treatment option for you, as it was in my case, then the GP and PCT as it was then just have to swallow it. After all, what do they do, just watch me have another stroke?

    You may have to go down the road of trying both to prove which is better.

    As far as improving still better over time - I think if you have been very unwell and then get on the right medication, it does take time to start to feel better. So the perception will be that you are improving over time. It mat well be that you are just getting better generally from where you were and that could happen on warfarin too along with other correct meds.

  • I think your right, especially when you've been unwell for so long. Thank you for taking the time to get back to me, I really appreciate it X

  • I'm like Dave, heparin works much better for me than warfarin at any INR

  • Thanks for replying Salty, after reading previous threads about Heparin it seems this is the general view felt by many.

  • My headaches did not go away as soon as I began taking warfarin. The strokes went away, but the head aches lingered for a couple of years. Though their frequency declined with each month! But my migraine triggers could still trigger one. ( for me it was bright lights in my eyes.). I've not had a migraine for @ 8 years now. So don't lose heart. Talk to your doc about tweaking meds, but you've been diagnosed, you're being treated and that probably means you're on your way out of the hole. Good luck!

  • Hi GinaD,

    Thanks for responding its just what I needed to hear, I have been wondering if over time my symptoms could improve further, fingers crossed!!

    Thanks again, Rosie.

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