Clopidogrel (Plavix) Nursing Considerations

Join to watch the full lesson now.

Included In This Lesson

Study Tools


Generic Name


Trade Name



Atherosclerotic events, MI, CVA, PVD, acute coronary syndrome


Inhibits platelet aggregation

Therapeutic Class

Antiplatelet agent

Pharmacologic Class

Platelet aggregation inhibitors

Nursing Considerations

• May cause GI bleeding, neutropenia, hypercholesterolemia
• May increase risk for bleeding in warfarin, aspirin, heparin
• Can increase risk for bleeding with garlic, ginkgo, ginger
• Monitor for signs of bleeding
• Monitor bleeding times
• Monitor CBC and platelet count
• Discontinue use 5-7 days before surgery

Join to watch the full lesson now.


Hi guys, let’s talk about Clopidogrel also known as Plavix. This is an oral medication, as you can see here, a box of film-coated tablets. So remember when we think about the therapeutic class versus the pharmacologic class, the therapeutic class is what the drug does in the body, while the pharmacologic class is the drug’s actual chemical effect. So the therapeutic class of Clopidogrel is an antiplatelet agent while the pharmacologic class is a platelet aggregation inhibitor.
So how does Clopidogrel work? Well, it works by inhibiting platelet aggregation, and we use Clopidogrel for atherosclerotic events, MI myocardial infarction, CVA, peripheral vascular disease, and acute coronary syndrome. So with this drug, we can see some side effects related to its action, which remembers inhibits platelet aggregation. So because of that, we can see things like bruising, nose bleeds, or bleeding in general, headaches, and even generalized pain. So let’s take a look at a few nursing considerations for Clopidogrel. With Clopidogrel, CBC, platelet count, signs of bleeding, and bleeding times should be monitored in patients. Clopidogrel may cause GI bleeding, neutropenia, and hypercholesterolemia. There is an increased risk of bleeding if the patient takes warfarin, heparin, or aspirin. And there are some food and interactions that increase the risk of bleeding, things like garlic, Ginko, and ginger. And keep in mind guys that patients sometimes take these things in the form of supplements and they often do not think that there would be an issue as most people do not consider vitamins or supplements medications. So really keep that in mind. Finally, you must teach your patient they have to discontinue Clopidogrel five to seven days before surgery. So guys, sometimes surgery patients do not take this seriously and don’t follow this direction. And as a result, their surgery is most definitely canceled.
That’s it for Clopidogrel or Plavix. Now go out and be your best self today and as always happy nursing.

Join to watch the full lesson now.