Compare Coumadin vs. Heparin

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Coumadin (warfarin)

Prescription only

Heparin

Prescription only
Prevents blood clots.

Coumadin (warfarin) is a cheap and effective medicine that prevents new blood clots. It requires regular blood tests and you'll need to eat, exercise, and take your medicines consistently.

5.2/ 7 average rating with 513 reviewsforCoumadin
Prevents blood clots.

Heparin is a good anticoagulant that prevents blood clots. However, you'll need to get frequent blood tests to make sure it's working well.

Upsides
  • Coumadin (warfarin) is available as a generic, so it should be less expensive than the brand version.
  • In case you start bleeding too much while using Coumadin (warfarin), your doctor can give you another drug that reverses Coumadin (warfarin)'s effects.
  • Coumadin (warfarin) comes in numerous strengths.
  • Coumadin (warfarin) has been around for a long time and is one of the most commonly used 'blood thinner' medicines.
  • Safe to use in pregnancy and if you're breast feeding.
  • There are other medications that can help stop unexpected bleeding while taking Heparin.
  • Available as a generic medication.
  • Usually used in the hospital, but can be given at home too.
Downsides
  • Raises your risk of bleeding and bruising.
  • Requires regular blood work, such as an INR, to make sure Coumadin (warfarin) is working correctly.
  • Your daily dose of Coumadin (warfarin) can change if you change your diet, exercise patterns, or use of alcohol.
  • A lot of other drugs and supplements interact with Coumadin (warfarin), so you'll need to check with your doctor or pharmacist before starting any new medicines.
  • You'll need to get labs/blood draws done on a regular basis to make sure the drug is working and to make sure you don't get unexpected side effects.
  • You can be at higher risk for bleeding or clotting while taking Heparin compared to other anticoagulants.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Injection
Price
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$4
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Reviews
513 
61%
think this treatment is worth it
54%
think this treatment works well
21%
think this treatment is a hassle

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Side effects
The Coumadin (warfarin) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
The Heparin FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
Risks and warnings
  • Life threatening bleeding

    Coumadin (warfarin) dose too high

    ...and 8 more risk factors

  • Harm to fetus

    Women of childbearing age

See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Unusual bleeding

    History of bleeding problems

    ...and 2 more risk factors

  • Clotting problems

    Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia

See more detailed risks and warnings