Complications of long-term anticoagulation
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We used life-table techniques to determine risks of morbidity and mortality associated with long-term warfarin treatment in an anticoagulation clinic. Cumulative risks for life-threatening complications and warfarin-related death among all patients were 1% at 6 months, 5% at 1 year, and 7% at 2 and 3 years. Cox regression analysis using age as a continuous variable failed to show an effect of age on cumulative risks of complication. The occurrence of a minor complication during the course of therapy did not place patients at higher risk for developing a major complication that would prompt discontinuation of therapy or cause death. There was no statistically significant difference between the cumulative risks of patients anticoagulated for cerebrovascular disease and the cumulative risks of patients anticoagulated for other indications.
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