Temporary reversal of anticoagulation using oral vitamin K

Richard H White, S. M. Minton, M. D. Andya, R. Hutchinson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Brief reversal of oral anticoagulant therapy is frequently necessary prior to minor surgery or invasive procedures. We sought to determine the effect of an oral dose of 2.0 mg of vitamin K1 on the international normalized ratio (INR) among patients with a stable therapeutic INR who were maintained on their daily dose of warfarin. We prospectively studied a convenience cohort of patients attending an anticoagulation clinic who had either just completed treatment for venous thromboembolism or were receiving prophylaxis for atrial fibrillation, cardiomyopathy, or peripheral vascular disease. Each patient received an oral dose of 2.0 mg of aqueous vitamin K1. Serial INR measurements were taken over 1 week. There was wide variation in the INR response between patients, from no change to complete reversal of anticoagulation. The effect also varied widely over time. There was a significant inverse correlation between the fall in logarithm of the INR and the daily warfarin dose required to achieve an INR value of 2.5 (r = -0.52, p = 0.011). Use of a 2.0 mg oral dose of vitamin K1 does not reliably reverse (correct) a therapeutic INR in patients maintained on their daily dose of warfarin.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-153
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Thrombosis and Thrombolysis
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000


  • Anticoagulation
  • INR
  • Vitamin K
  • Warfarin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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