Importance of Controlling Blood Pressure While taking Warfarin

By: Alere Staff

Once you have been diagnosed with a heart condition and prescribed warfarin, or another brand name anticoagulation medication such as Coumadin®, testing your INR becomes part of your lifestyle. Upon monitoring your INR, you soon find how important living healthy can be and how much influence your activities and choices have on your overall health.

The same holds true for when you are monitoring your blood pressure. High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a systolic (top number) 140 mm Hg or above, or diastolic (bottom number) 90 mm Hg or above. When you find yourself watching these numbers as well, management of your health and lifestyle can become even more important. However, you can take your management a step further by monitoring these conditions in the comfort of your home.

Home blood pressure (BP) monitoring can help health providers determine whether or not certain treatments are working once patients have been diagnosed with high blood pressure. In fact, the American Heart Association recommends home BP monitoring for all people with high blood pressure. Home BP monitoring provides an important function because multiple readings taken over time can provide your doctor visibility to your blood pressure throughout the day, over a longer stretch of time and in various circumstances.

The devices used in home BP monitoring are simple to use. Monitoring your BP at home can easily become part of your daily routine. Like INR monitoring, home BP monitoring is not a substitute for regular visits to your physician. It is an additional tool that aids your doctor in evaluating whether medication prescribed to you is working effectively. Following a doctor’s advice and recommended treatment is especially important once you have been prescribed medication to lower your blood pressure. Never stop taking your medication without consulting your doctor, even if you feel fine or your blood pressure readings are within normal range. These symptoms or lack thereof, may simply demonstrate that medications you have been prescribed are working.

Home monitoring makes you an important player in your overall treatment, allowing you to take control of your health and aid your physician in prescribing effective care. These measures could save you from future complications, including visits to the emergency and health-related expenses.  

COUMADIN® is a registered trademark of Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharma Company. Alere is not affiliated or associated with Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharma Company or the COUMADIN® trademark.