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Health Protocols

Blood Clot Prevention

The Flaws of Mainstream Therapies

The most effective means of blood clot management is prevention. For high-risk patients, mainstream prophylaxis against thrombosis and its complications often includes powerful anti-clotting medications. These require careful monitoring and inconvenient dietary restrictions.

Conventional medications used to prevent blood clots, such as warfarin (Coumadin), increase the potential for serious bleeding as well as the risk of mortality from traumatic injuries.2 Moreover, warfarin may lead to significant long-term side effects, such as increased risk of atherosclerosis and osteoporosis.

Life Extension has identified a strategy to reduce the detriments of long-term warfarin therapy. Judicious use of vitamin K2 has been shown in peer-reviewed studies to reduce the fluctuation in coagulation status associated with warfarin therapy. This notion runs contrary to that of conventional medicine, whose best advice is to totally eliminate vitamin K from the diet during warfarin therapy, an outdated guideline that compromises vascular and skeletal health.

Next-generation anticoagulant medications that overcome these vascular and skeletal risks are emerging, yet they still lack sufficient data from clinical trials to solidify them as first-line treatments. The most promising of these new drugs is dabigatran (Pradaxa); however, early trials indicate that dabigatran may be more effective for reducing stroke risk in patients with atrial fibrillation.3,4

Life Extension emphasizes that optimal thrombosis risk reduction can never be viewed in isolation, but must encompass a global strategy. Measures to reduce the risk of blood clots include reducing chronic inflammation, maintaining healthy body weight, reducing cholesterol, suppressing homocysteine levels, and lowering blood pressure. Additionally, the use of scientifically studied nutrients to target abnormal platelet aggregation can intervene in the thrombotic process before it causes a life-threatening medical emergency.