Heparin Side Effects

by admin on June 8, 2009

Anytime you take medications, side effects may occur. This is dependent on many things such as age, use of alcohol or over-the-counter medications such as aspirin, your unique body composition, your sensitivity to foreign agents, your overall health and the time of administration. Even your diet, amount of sleep or stress in your life can affect the way you react to medication. It also depends on whether or not you use the medication correctly and the strength of dosage. Many people take heparin with little or no side effects while others can have severe allergic reactions. Some of these reactions can be quite serious and even life-threatening.

It’s also an unfortunate fact that even if you are doing everything correctly, you may be exposed to tainted heparin or have fallen into the hands of incompetent health care providers. If you believe you may be having a severed allergic reaction to heparin or a heparin lock flush, don’t hesitate! Get yourself to the nearest medical facility. Your life may depend upon it!

Drugs.com, an online drug information site dedicated to educating and informing the public about medication lists the following possible reactions to heparin as serious concerns and recommends immediate treatment if you experience any of them:

  • rash, hives, itching
  • difficulty breathing
  • tightness in the chest
  • swelling of the mouth, face, lips or tongue
  • black, tarry or bloody stools
  • bleeding from the gums when brushing or flossing teeth
  • blood in the urine
  • calf or leg pain
  • tenderness or swelling
  • chest pain
  • confusion
  • coughing up blood
  • excessive bleeding from cuts
  • fever or chills
  • increased menstrual bleeding
  • lower back pain
  • nosebleeds
  • excessive numbness or color change of the skin, fingers or toes
  • one-sided numbness or weakness
  • severe headache or dizziness
  • severe or persistent pain, swelling or redness at the injection site
  • shortness of breath
  • slurred speech
  • stomach pain or swelling
  • unexplained vaginal bleeding 
  • unusual brusising
  • vision problems
  • vomit that looks like coffee grounds

The most common side effect of heparin or the heparin flush is likely to be bleeding or hemorrhaging and can generally be controlled by withdrawing the drug. Two types of Heparin Induced Thrombocytopenia (HIT)–Type I and Type II which results in a low platelet count have also been reported in a significant number of patients. Type I in usually not serious and doesn’t require intervention or other treatment. Type II, on the other hand, may have serious consequences if not addressed.

If you or a loved one has suffered from any of these heparin-indued side effects, you may be eligible to receive compensation from the appropriate manufacturer. Fill out the form to the right if you would like to talk to one of our representatives or get help finding a personal injury lawyer.

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