Tuesday, 16 November 2010

A letter to my anti-coagulant.

Dear Warfarin,

I just thought I’d drop you a note to say goodbye and wish you well.

Oh didn’t you know? Our 6 months are now officially up and it is time for us to part ways. I’m sure you’re not too upset about it we haven’t had the best of relationships have we?

Remember when we first met in hospital? Those were fun days weren’t they? Days of excruciating pain in my chest, a tube up my nose and chillin’ with the old ladies. Those times were good and we were pretty good mates, I mean really it was all down to you that I got to leave wasn’t it? I had to wait until my blood was thin enough and you did the job – I wasn’t too worried about how we were going to get along at all.

But then. Then I came home and you decided you hated me and that you weren’t going to make my blood thin enough and that meant I had to stab myself in the stomach and it hurt and it freaked me out and it left me all bruised and gross and then I had a complete moment of madness and actually posted a blog entry with a photo of my stomach on it (still no idea what I was thinking about there).

I know that things got better but we have most definitely had our ups and downs. Remember when you stopped me drinking alcohol? Yeah....that was fun. In 6 months I’ve been drunk on 2 occasions. I am displeased with those odds to be honest. Although I feel I should extend thanks your way for getting me to look at and re-assess my drinking habits and why I do drink. That has been a useful lesson and I hope I don’t forget it but I won’t lie, I’m going to get incredibly drunk at the wedding this weekend and mostly just because I can.

I won’t miss too much about our INR appointments. I won’t miss the fact that despite the nurse telling me I would probably end up only having to go once every 2 months, it was never more than once every 2 weeks and more often it was once every single week because my INR just refused to stay stable. It was up and down like a jack in the box and they never seemed to be able to figure out why (although the weight loss is probably a prime suspect). No matter how hard you tried you just didn’t seem to get my blood thin enough did you? That’s why I ended up on a stonkingly big dose of you. 12mg. That’s a lot in case you didn’t know, most people seem to get somewhere between 4-6mg of you daily – why did I need so much of you?

I won’t lie though, you have been a source of comfort to me. At least when I was taking you I knew that my blood was going to be thin. Ok, so not as thin as they would have liked, but still thinner than normal. And I knew that as long as I was with you, someone would be keeping an eye on me. So I do feel upset that we’re parting ways because due to the incredibly sub-standard care I’ve received from the NHS no-one is going to be watching out for me from now on. You were there after all when the Doctors told me several times that I would be with you for 6 months and then they would do a Thrombophilia test because of my family history to check that I wasn’t at a risk of developing more clots. Do you remember that?

Shame they don’t remember or didn’t write it down on my notes because they’re now denying they ever said it. So despite the family history of developing embolisms and DVTs out of nowhere and despite the fact that a healthy 27 year old shouldn’t randomly get blood clots on her lungs, they’ve basically told me where to go. That’s a shame really isn’t it?

Thankfully I’ve found a saviour. I’m going to be taking part in a study for a year for a different anti-coagulant. They want to see if this drug will be useful for people like me who have had random clots and are therefore at risk of getting them again – hopefully in the future they will complete their 6 months of Warfarin and then be put on this drug for another year to make sure they’re ok. Although it’s nice to be part of something that’s trying to advance medical knowledge, I’m mostly doing it because I’m scared and this way someone’s going to be checking to make sure I don’t die.

Don’t be jealous. This new guy isn’t really your replacement. No-one can ever replace you, you kind of saved my life and for that I’m ever go grateful.

(But this guy’s pretty cool, makes sure my blood is thin (if I haven’t got the placebo that is, this is a double-blind study), there are no restrictions to what I can eat and I can drink until my liver fails.)

Anyway, I just wanted to say thanks for everything, I know we haven’t always been the best of friends but I’d hate to discount what you’ve done for me.

I hope you don't think me rude if I say that I hope I don't see you again.

Lots of love

The Girl

Goodbye Warfarin - goodbyyyyyyyyeeeeee!!
(For those who like to know these things, pink = 5mg, blue = 3 mg and brown = 1mg)


  1. Coolio!! Now that's good news! Although not so good about the forgotten test...
    I think it's definitely been good to you because it's obviously also helped with the weight loss - think of all those empty calories!! ;-)
    hope you stay ok for now and don't get another one of those until you're really really old, by which time it won't matter - you know what i mean!

  2. Hope the new drugs are easier to get along with xxx

  3. They do look kind of cute, like buttons.

    But I know how you feel. Good to have when you need it, good not to have any more.

    Prednisolone I don't miss you one bit!

    Three cheers for drugs we don't have to take any more!

  4. Aah, the joys of daily stabbing yourself in the stomach. Been there, done that, I'll pass on the t-shirt.

    But seriously, I'm sure you should be entitled to a second opinion about the Thrombophilia test.

  5. Hey, well done. Will they monitor you now or is that it - all finished with?? Hope you continue to stay fit and healthy. S x x x

  6. Well done on getting to the 6months. And even more cogratulations about your lost weight, so what if it made your results a bit difficult for us nursey people to deal with. That's what we're paid for after all. Keep up the good work and hope you get along ok with your new friend.x

  7. Does this mean you can drink again?! Great news that you're well again though xx

  8. Oh what good news. Not so good that the NHS appears to have mucked you around right royally but it sounds like things are improving now and being able to drink again is definitely a Good Thing.

  9. Bye bye warfarin thanks for looking after our Girl ;)

  10. ooo, Petit Filoux I don't think it was the Wafarin that caused the weight loss so much as the careful eating and commitment to exercising!

    I hope the dugs study goes well; I really enjoyed my time doing one and am glad that what I was involved in has become standard treatment for asthmatics leaving hospital after a severe attack.

  11. Good luck with the study and boo to the rubbish docs refusing to test you.


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