Q:

Is self-administered INR blood testing recommended?

A:

Quick Answer

Physicians recommend self-administered International Normalized Ratio blood testing because it is convenient, gives patients a sense of security, and empowers them to take an active role in their medical care, according to the National Blood Clot Alliance. Individuals who self-test have slightly less clotting and bleeding complications than those who test at physicians' offices, and they often achieve the target INR range.

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Full Answer

A person who self-administers the INR blood test uses the same point-of-care instruments used in clinics, notes the National Bloot Clot Alliance. He then informs his anticoagulation clinic pharmacist, physician or nurse of the results, to get further dosing instructions. Visiting an anticoagulation clinic or a physician's office to get the test is time-consuming, since its takes one to two hours to get the results. The results can take one to two days if the clinic needs to send the blood sample to an external laboratory. Self-testing gives a patient more freedom, especially if he has to rely on a caregiver for transportation to a health care facility.

Self-testing gives a patient a sense of security because he can easily check his INR when he suspects it is too high or too low, states the National Blood Clot Alliance. Patients suitable for INR self-testing are those who have obtained approval from their physician's office, have the dexterity to self-test, and have demonstrated sufficient compliance in previous anticoagulation management procedures.

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