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Posted by National Admin on 10/08/2018.

Guidelines – Oral Anticoagulants and Equestrian Sport

Anticoagulants (blood thinners) are used in a number of medical conditions. In simple terms, they inhibit blood clot formation, and subsequently increase the bleeding time after an injury.

As a result there is realistic concern in sport that a minor injury can have severe consequences due to excessive bleeding e.g. internal organs such as liver, lungs and brain. Severe blood loss from fractures, especially pelvis can occur.

Anticoagulants are used for a variety of medical conditions with varying dosage. There may also be co-existing medical conditions which would increase the risk of injury.

 It is paramount that any equestrian athlete prescribed anticoagulants seeks the advice of his/her treating physician, giving full details of their equestrian discipline and subsequent risks.

The athlete and physician jointly must decide whether the risk of competing is substantial and should therefore be avoided. If it is decided that the risk is minimal due, perhaps, to low dose medication or a low risk sport then the athlete must wear a medical alert device, or medical armband, at all times to alert any emergency physicians or paramedics.

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