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Plavix Side Effects

Patients who take Plavix to ward off heart attack or stroke may find that the risk of Plavix side effects is greater than the potential benefit. Studies suggest a link between Plavix and bleeding and a risk of Plavix interactions with other medications. Patients who have been harmed by use of Plavix may be eligible to file a Plavix lawsuit against the drug's maker.


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Plavix Clopidogrel

Plavix is an anti-clotting medication, used to prevent blood clots that can lead to heart attacks or strokes in certain patients. It only works once it is converted or metabolized into its active form (clopidogrel) by the liver enzyme CYP2C19.

Normally, platelets in the blood clump together and form blood clots that stop bleeding. However, in some patients, these platelets clump together in narrow arteries, resulting in a clot in the artery, which can prevent proper blood flow. When blood flow is stopped in arteries that lead to the brain, the brain does not receive an adequate supply of oxygen, which can cause a transient ischemic attack. When arteries to the heart are blocked for a short time, patients experience angina (chest pain). When that blockage occurs for longer, patients experience a heart attack.

Plavix is prescribed to help prevent blood clots from forming in the arteries. The top-selling drug is made in the US by Bristol-Myers Squibb and internationally by Sanofi-Aventis.

Plavix Warnings

On November 28, 2009, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning that patients who take Plavix should avoid using Prilosec or Priolosec OTC (omeprazole). The warning was issued because the FDA was concerned that when taken together, Plavix's effectiveness was reduced by approximately half.

"Patients at risk for heart attacks or strokes who use Plavix to prevent platelet aggregation will not get the full effect of this medicine if they are also taking Prilosec," said Mary Ross Southworth, Pharm.D., of the Division of Cardiovascular and Renal Products in the FDA' Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.

Because Plavix does not work properly until it is converted or metabolized into its active form by the liver enzyme CYP2C19, Prilosec's blocking of that enzyme reduces the effectiveness of Plavix. According to the FDA, information provided by the manufacturers supported "the existence of a significant interaction that could negatively impact a person's health."

Other drugs that patients are urged to stay away from while taking Plavix include Nexium, Tagamet and Tagamet HB, Diflucan, Nizoral and Prozac.

Plavix CHARISMA Study

In 2006, a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine called the Clopidogrl for High Atherothrombotic Risk and Ischemic Stabilization Management and Avoidance (CHARISMA) study found that there was no added benefit to treating patients with both clopidogrel and aspirin combined as compared with aspirin and a placebo.

Researchers further found that in a subgroup of participants who were given the combined medications as a preventative measure, but were not symptomatic of stroke or heart attack, the risk of moderate to severe bleeding increased. Furthermore, the risk of death increased in patients who were given clopidogrel. Among asymptomatic patients, the rate of death from cardiovascular causes was 3.9 percent among those who were given clopidogrel and 2.2 percent among those given a placebo.

Plavix Stomach Bleeding

A study published in The New England Journal of Medicine (as reported by The New York Times; 01/20/05) found that patients taking Plavix suffered 12 times more ulcers than patients who took aspirin plus a heartburn medication. Many patients were reportedly put on Plavix because it was believed to have lower rates of ulcers than aspirin, a belief that was reportedly undermined by the study. The study found that of patients who took Plavix during the analysis, 8.6 percent had a bleeding ulcer during a 12-month period, while 0.7 percent of those given aspirin and Nexium had a bleeding ulcer.

Researchers recommended that some patients who took Plavix be switched to aspirin and a heartburn medication because the aspirin not only appears safer, but is also reportedly less expensive than Plavix.

Lawyers are currently investigating the possibility of a Plavix lawsuit against the makers of the anti-clotting drug.

Register your Plavix Complaint

If you or a loved one has suffered abdominal bleeding while taking Plavix, you may qualify for damages or remedies that may be awarded in a Plavix class action or lawsuit. Please click the link below to submit your complaint to a lawyer for a free evaluation.

Last updated on


Is Plavix Better than Aspirin?
Is Plavix Better than Aspirin?
November 23, 2011
Bellingham, WA When patients who could not tolerate aspirin were told to take Plavix, they probably assumed that the risk of Plavix side effects would be similar to, if not less than, those associated with aspirin. At they very least, even with a risk of Plavix stomach bleeding, they would have assumed that Plavix was as effective as aspirin, and certainly no more harmful. Yet some studies suggest that the risk of side effects, including a link between Plavix and bleeding, combined with a lack of effectiveness, making the drug less appealing than some alternatives [READ MORE]

Plavix Gets Black Box Warning
Plavix Gets Black Box Warning
March 12, 2010

The FDA has warned that Plavix may not work for some people, putting them at greater risk for heart attack and stroke. The blood-thinner (anti-clotting) drug will get a black box warning and doctors have been told to consider alternative medications--such as aspirin-- for patients who cannot process the drug [READ MORE]


Posted by
Patricia Brown
My mother passed back in 2016 she was at Ithaca Cayuga medical center while she was there she was giving Plavix
she suffered 3 strokes in the hospital and died shortly after.

Posted by
Grace DuPrey
My mother Mazie was abruptly taken off Plavix and had a stroke because of it. She died shortly after that.

Posted by
charles baker
I started taking Plavix in 1999 because of angina. I had a stint and was told to take a year. In 2000 I had a heart attack. In 2010, 2011, 2012 I had angina and was given several stints. I was told that I would have to take Plavix for the rest of my life. In 2014 I had another open heart surgery. I continued to take Plavix. In 2015 I had a serious bleed out at home. Barely was able to make it to the emergency room where I had another incident of bleeding. I had to receive blood and was transferred to another hospital. I stayed in intensive care for two or three days and was finally discharged on the 4th day after the doctor went inside and said I had internal bleeding and to stop the Plavix. I have been off them since.

Posted by
Sarah Roberts
My mother was put on Plavix and also was put on diflucan

Posted by
After having a stent inserted, I was told to take Plavix for one year and then stop. Shortly after stopping Plavix, I lost hearing in my right ear. The ENT explained that while Plavix prevents blood clots, it actually causes blood clots if suddenly stopped, and that a small clot caused by Plavix stopped blood flow to the ear long enough to ruin it. Soon after, I began to have serious dizzy spells. These events, which have continued ever since, make me unable to walk within one minute, sometimes include vomiting and last for up to six hours. Since there is no way to predict when this will happen and no doctor so far can tell me how to prevent the dizzy spells, I now have no life because I can’t leave home unless I am with someone who can help me if a dizzy spell starts.

Posted by
I was at home watching tv an it stared going fuzzy,my arm numb an so on, well the story goes I get to hospital (& im 50)an im told im haveing a heart attack_
,so to make it short i get out of O-R with a brand new Stent in my RCA,Went to heart he told me change my diet an take these bla bla bla,follow up in a month,well heres were it gets very scarey for me, He had gave me a pill called "Plavix"an i had taken it for a while,my Dr never told me about any side effects I was doing a number 2 an seen blood, then next day blood,this went on for five days each day more blood, Itold my girlfreid about it an that i wanted to go to hospital I spent 10 days in hospital till they found out what it was from Plavix.Im glad im alive.that stuff caused me problems an im still haveing problems caused by plavix 1 1/2 years after i quit takeing it
I cant get a Dr to tell me whats going on in my intestines an stomache im in pain all the time from takeing plavix an bleeding for 15 or more days total It ate my liner up in my stomache
Please if your takeing plavix get good medical advice an read all about any pill before ya take it Them ppl dont care who they hurt or kill they just want money it seems, Thanks for letting me share.

Posted by
My father had a stroke, brain nerve damage leading to failure to feel his foot making it very hard to walk, gastrointestinal ulcers, that lead to very low hemoglobin.

Posted by
temp paralysis of legs, severe head pain. hospitalized and taken off plavix due to the brain bleed.

Posted by
New Jersey
I was completely independant at my age until i suffered a massive stroke on 10-9-11 which left me paralyzed on my right side and unable to speak coherently. As a result of the stroke I am in a long term care nursing home.

Posted by
Emergency Room personnel stated that if we had been 10 minutes later arriving at the ER by ambulance, my husband may have died from loss of blood. He had to have 4 transfusions from 09/27/09-to 09/28/09. He has to miss work for at least 2 weeks.


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