The website of the Office of Health and Human Services for the state of Massachusetts has a good list of blood thinners, or anticoagulants, and antiplatelet medications. The grouping categorizes blood anticoagulants by their delivery: orally, intravenously and through injections. Both generic and brand names are identified.
Patients at risk of heart attack or stroke take blood thinners, according to MedlinePlus. These medications help prevent blood clots form developing in arteries and veins. There are two types of blood thinners. Anticoagulants make blood clotting take longer by interacting with body chemicals. Antiplatelet medications prevent the formation of clots by keeping platelets in the blood from clustering.
For blood thinners to work properly, it is essential that patients follow the instructions carefully, states the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Doses should not be skipped or doubled. Some of the medications must be taken at a set time each day. It is possible for over-the-counter medications, herbal supplements, vitamins and other prescription drugs to interfere with blood thinners, so patients should always check with their physicians before taking any of these.
Bleeding is a common side effect of taking blood thinners, reports the AHRQ. Patients who experience serious bleeding need medical attention. Signs of this include very heavy menstrual bleeding, brown or red vomit or urine, prolonged nosebleeds, strange bruising and dizziness.