A new study finds stable patients on blood thinners may not need to get their blood drawn as often as they currently do. Researchers were able to increase the number of people waiting longer than five weeks in between their INR blood draws from less than half (41.8%) to more than two-thirds (69.3%).
"Warfarin patients with good INR control could have fewer blood draws, less discomfort and less cost," says Geoffrey Barnes, M.D., first author and cardiologist at the University of Michigan's Frankel Cardiovascular Center.
The U-M team published the new research in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis, thanks to participation in the Michigan Anticoagulation Quality Improvement Initiative (one of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan's Collaborative Quality Initiatives). The paper studied 890 stable warfarin-treated patients in Michigan.