Management of dental patients taking anticoagulants or antiplatelet drugs
An increasing number of patients are being prescribed anticoagulants or antiplatelet drugs for prevention of stroke or thrombo-embolic events.
Essentially the drugs are divided into two main groups
- Warfarin (& other vitamin K antagonists)
- Novel or new oral anticoagulants - NOACs (e.g. dabigatran, rivaroxaban & apixaban)
- Aspirin, clopidogrel & prasugrel
The advice as how to best manage these patients (especially those on Novel oral anticoagulants) is still evolving and depends on the drug that is being taken, any co-morbidities / medicines and the treatment proposed. Strong evidence is lacking and is currently based around expert opinion, consensus and existing guidance / experience.
The OMFS department does NOT have a local guideline / policy regarding this but the interested reader is directed to the following national guidance & articles.
Scottish Dental Clinical Effectiveness Programme - "Management of Dental Patients Taking Anticoagulants or Antiplatelet Drugs" - published August 2015
NICE Clinical Knowledge Summary
Curtin C, Hayes JM, Hayes SJ. Dental implications of new oral anticoagulants for atrial fibrillation. Dental Update. 2014;41:526-531
Page updated 09/02/16