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Heart Attack and Antiplatelet Agents

Written by ColleenO.

Like anticoagulants, antiplatelet drugs help prevent the blood from clotting. They may be given when aspirin cannot be used. They may also be given in conjunction with aspirin to people who have had an angioplasty.

Aspirin may be given by emergency medical personnel and continued after admission to the hospital.

Common names of prescription antiplatelet drugs include:

  • Ticlopidine (Ticlid)
  • Clopidogrel (Plavix)
  • Prasugrel (Effient)

Effect of Antiplatelet Agents on Heart Attack

Antiplatelet agents may help preventing future heart attacks by inhibiting the formation of blood clots. They do this by keeping platelets from clumping and sticking together.

Aspirin helps prevent clotting and reclosing of the artery.

Read more details about Antiplatelet Agents.

Possible side effects of prescription antiplatelet agents include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Skin rash
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  • Skin bruising
  • Irritation of the stomach lining
  • Bleeding from the digestive system and other internal organs
  • Allergic reaction

Aspirin should generally be taken with food to decrease stomach upset. Possible side effects include:

  • Stomach upset
  • Gastrointestinal bleeding and stroke
  • Bronchospasm

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