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Hundreds of thousands of UK hospital patients are being injected with potentially dangerous blood-thinning drugs for no good reason.
They are needlessly being put at risk of strokes or stomach bleeds – and some are dying due to the powerful drugs.
Vascular consultant Dr Ander Cohen says too many are being given the thinners because guidelines are littered with ‘schoolboy errors’.
His criticisms are all the more potent because he helped push for greater use of the thinners in the first place.
A decade ago, about 25,000 people were dying every year after developing deep vein thromboses (DVTs) while immobile in hospital beds.
These clots usually form in a leg vein before travelling through the body and getting lodged in the large artery that carries blood from the heart to the lungs. The condition, known as a pulmonary embolism (PE), is often fatal.
Blood thinners known as heparins can cut the risk of death from PE by two-thirds – if used in the right patients.
But Dr Cohen believes the drugs are now being used ‘too broadly’.