Nattokinase as a blood thinner... (getting off Plavix)

Hi all,

I had my heart attack in Oct. 2008 and had a bare metal stent put in. I have been on 75mg of Plavix for 5 months. My doctor said I would probably be on it for one year.

I've been feeling unsteady and occasionally light headed for a while and it's getting worse. I am thinking it might be the Plavix. Has anyone else had this???

Also, my Osteopath wants to help me get off it and on to the more natural Nattokinase.

While researching getting off Plavix, I read about the potential rebound effect. It is said those who get off Plavix suddenly are more likely to have another heart attack within 90 days. That may be the reason doctors suggest staying on Plavix for life.

We plan to ween me off the Plavix and switch to Nattokinase.

Any similar experiences???

Thanks,

Meridian

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Good luck, I think that is great.I just got off coumadin and i'm taking asprin 325mg...anything more natural is better.I felt so tried all the time while on coumadin and now i feel so much better.My pains are gone and i'm hoping to stay off it.I also am looking into other things to get rid of fluid.It's like i do not have a heart problem anymore.PLEASE let us know how you make out.Is your dr. working with you on how much nattokinase to take? My dr. does not like the idea at all of anything but his scrips..oh well, look for another one ? All the best, Liz

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Hi Meridian,

Just wondering about other drugs/supplements you are now taking that might also be the culprit re your unsteady/light headedness? Any other conditions (low blood pressure, etc)?

There is a lot of research out there saying that stopping Plavix suddenly can mean dangerous and even deadly outcomes. How will your osteo monitor whether stent restenosis is occuring, post-Plavix?

Even Dr. Andrew Weil, who is a prominent voice for natural healing methods, warns on his website Q&A:

"There are natural substances that have anticoagulant (blood thinning) activity, but I don't know that I would rely on them if I were you. Drugs like Coumadin (warfarin) and Plavix (clopidogrel) and others are prescribed to "thin" the blood in order to prevent the formation of blood clots that can restrict blood flow, leading to a stroke or heart attack.

"If you're taking prescribed drugs to prevent these very serious, potentially fatal, conditions, I urge you not to go off them suddenly.

"A number of natural substances have been shown to act as blood thinners: Garlic, ginger, ginkgo, dong quai, feverfew, fish oil, vitamin E, and tree ear mushrooms all appear to have anticoagulant activity. But although these products may thin the blood, that alone DOES NOT MAKE THEM SUITABLE SUBSTITUTES for prescription blood thinners.

"No studies have compared their effectiveness to pharmaceutical blood thinners, and there's no available information on the dosages required to reproduce the effects of Coumadin or Plavix. Supplements are also unregulated products, so unlike drugs, there's no assurance that identical doses of different brands will give you the same effect, or that the effects will be the same from bottle to bottle."

I believe you have to balance the effectiveness of current medications with your desire to ingest a more natural substance.

So far, I've been unable to find any actual scientific peer-reviewed research that says Nattokinase is an appropriate anti-platelet therapy equal to Plavix - other than a whack of websites that are selling this product, which immediately eliminates their credibility in my book!

Good luck...

XOXOXO

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What are your Osteopath's credentials? My cardio went to Harvard Med school. I only ask because my sister in law sells natural food suppliments & wanted to make an appointment to "talk" to my cardio when he said I couldn't ake them. She has a degree in french & a whole year selling these things so that make her a nutrition expert. I life natural remedies but doctors are there for a reason & I get worked up when they try to replace medical care.

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Thanks!

I do have a propensity towards natural supplements and so I appreciate your posts to take caution.

I have decided to stay on the Plavix for at least another month or two and talk to my cardiologist. Unfortunately, he refers to supplements as weird chemicals so I have a hard time accepting what he says. I'd LOVE to find a cardiologist that is open to supplements and natural remedies. Has anyone found someone like that?

My headaches seem to have been around since the heart attack (when I started Plavix) and the unsteadiness is getting worse lately. I've started Iodine supplements for my thyroid but they don't have diziness as a side effect.

It's all a mystery and it frustrates me that there is little known information meanwhile I'm gambling with my life!

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Hi Travellygirl

Check out the Mayo Clinic's guide to alternative medicine (they also have an excellent book on this subject): http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/alternative-medicine/CM99999

Like MMaslek, I'd trust only what I read/hear/learn from a bona fide university or teaching hospital over what supplement sellers claim any day. There is just so much unadulterated crap out there - we cannot afford to play Russian Roulette with a potentially fatal cardiac complication like restenosis.

The supplement industry is completely unregulated (at least until 2010) with not even a requirement that content ingredients or dosage amounts have to be what the packaging label says! Who on earth can trust this kind of snake oil salesmanship? Manufacturers are allowed to make any claim they want to except that this supplement will cure illness.

Anti-platelet or blood-thinning medications are prescribed only to save your life. If you stay on Plavix for another month or two, what specific plan does your osteo have in place to make sure your danger of restenosis is addressed?

If you find a cardiologist who's in favour of taking a patient off Plavix in order to start an unproven supplement, please post his/her name here!

XOXO

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I was put on Plavix post stents in 2004 and took it for ten months. Then I had additional stents put in in 2006 and was on Plavix until I had a serious GI bleed and was taken off of them immediately. That was in April of 2008. I continue to take 81mg aspirin. I personally did not suffer any side effects of stopping the Plavix and I just had a good result from my latest PET cardiac stress test. Always best to talk these things over with an experienced Doctor, as the other gals have said. It is a delicate balancing act, indeed!

Nancy

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Tgirl,

You are on beta blockers too now? That can cause fatigue and dizziness...........Plavix, however, if you can possibly stay ON it for a year or more, is extremely important in keeping your stents from blocking up (restenosis).

Having said that, I've never been able to take more than a single dose of Plavix because within a few hours I starting fainting........My docs have no clue. I wonder what Plavix is doing to cause me to lose consciousness (syncope is probably a better term). Do I have arterial weakness in a cranial artery and Plavix creates a brain bleed somewhere? Tres bizarre. I WOULD take Plavix gladly if I could though and don't recommend you abruptly discontinuing Plavix. It may be saving your life every day luv.

Beta blockers are superb at helping the heart beat just a little slower which eases it into a slightly gentler state....doesn't have to work quite as hard. This goes a long way to inhibiting random onset of arrhythmias...and lowers bp if that is your problem. If you already have normal to low bp, then dizziness and even fainting 'bottoming out' can be a problem.
Beta blockers have been a huge help to me....in spite of having to live life through that heavy blanket of added side effect fatigue.

take care today,
Jaynie

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I have been on Plavix since 2001. Just discussed the possibility of getting off with my Doctor on March 13th. He said I would probably stay on it for life. I have had no problems with or because of Plavix, that I know of.

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I had 4 stents last March and started Plavix and almost died. I had most of the side effects including the fever which can take your life. They switched me to Ticlid and I have done great on that. They said I would take it for at least a year and maybe longer.

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Have had no problems with my Plavix, so am lucky.

My concern about any of our 'natural' remedies is there is no way to control known dosage as you cannot always believe what the bottle says.

I agree: use with care if you choose to use.

Lynn

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Hi ,
I have been on plavix since my stenting in Jan 07 ,and just tolerating well and my doctor advises to continue ,feeling generally well except strarted having some ache and pain in muscles ,shoulders and both arms most painful am on statin 40 daily ,
feeling low to continue with medications for so long.

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I don't get the feeling that either doctor is really reaching out to find out what is truly going on here with your symptoms.... and that is what needs to happen, before changing the one medicine that could potentially do some of the biggest harm to your condition. I, and many others here, have gone thru alot of adjustments of meds before finding that right mix. How is your blood pressure? your heart rate? You mentioned headaches...
are you taking something for those that might make you lightheaded or do you have migraines that started with all of this? At one point, I was rushed to the hospital with a blood pressure of 80/50 from my meds, that my cardio did not think would effect my already low blood pressure. But it took a while to act that way in my system. There are so many things that can make you feel badly, and to assume it is only that one possibility, could be missing something more important. Sad to say, but we are the ones that have to nudge the doctors. Hang in there!

Hug,
Pam

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I don't get the feeling that either doctor is really reaching out to find out what is truly going on here with your symptoms.... and that is what needs to happen, before changing the one medicine that could potentially do some of the biggest harm to your condition. I, and many others here, have gone thru alot of adjustments of meds before finding that right mix. How is your blood pressure? your heart rate? You mentioned headaches...
are you taking something for those that might make you lightheaded or do you have migraines that started with all of this? At one point, I was rushed to the hospital with a blood pressure of 80/50 from my meds, that my cardio did not think would effect my already low blood pressure. But it took a while to act that way in my system. There are so many things that can make you feel badly, and to assume it is only that one possibility, could be missing something more important. Sad to say, but we are the ones that have to nudge the doctors. Hang in there!

Hug,
Pam

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So... I learned why I was getting dizzy and it wasn't the Plavix. It was the undiagnosed brain tumor! Phew. What a crazy life I'm having!

After taking Plavix for 5-6 months, I weaned myself off of it to prepare for surgery. In the meantime, I've been taking nattokinase. I have no studies, just several recommendations and a desire to be taking something for my heart.

I got off the Metropolol early on because it was making my blood pressure too low.

If you're interested, this is the product...

http://www.vitalzym-review.com/vitalzym-seb

None of my alternative practictioners was willing to take me off Plavix but the upcoming surgery made it necessary so off I went.

Best of luck to you all!

Meridian

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