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We've gathered tips and tools designed to make self-testing your INR even easier, including a getting-started checklist, dietary advice and steps on how to get a good blood sample.

Getting-started checklist
Are you ready to take the first step toward simplifying your INR monitoring?

Here’s a checklist for starting your journey of self-testing using a CoaguChek® Vantus or CoaguChek® XS meter. It’s easier than you might think – and we’re here to help, every step of the way. 


Step 1 - Your doctor sends in your patient information.

Your doctor submits the Physician Order Form (your prescription) and Patient Authorization Form online to CoaguChek Patient Services.

Step 2 - CoaguChek Patient Services confirms your coverage.

We'll contact your insurance company and provide you with estimated out-of-pocket costs. If you decide not to pursue self-testing, we'll notify your doctor.

Step 3 - CoaguChek Patient Services schedules your patient training.

CoaguChek Patient Services schedules an in-person training by a certified healthcare professional or by your doctor's office staff. During training, you'll learn the importance of testing as prescribed and how to:
•  Use the CoaguChek Vantus or CoaguChek XS meter
•  Report your test results
•  Order supplies

Step 4 - CoaguChek Patient Services manages results and compliance.

We'll collect and communicate all results and notify your doctor of out-of-range results. We also have a convenient program that helps keep you on your perscribed testing schedule and reminds you if you miss reporting a result.

Step 5 - CoaguChek Patient Services provides ongoing service and support.

We provide testing supplies to you and provide 24/7 technical support for the CoaguChek XS and CoaguChek Vantus meters.

Resources  / 



Working with CoaguChek Patient Services
CoaguChek Patient Services is designed to help you enjoy the freedom of home INR testing.

When you receive your new CoaguChek Vantus or CoaguChek XS meter, CoaguChek Patient Services will teach you how to use it. Representatives can answer any questions you might have about the process. After your meeting, they’ll continue to provide ongoing support. 

Starting with CoaguChek Patient Services is easy. Just call 1-800-780-0675 today. Your doctor will then be contacted for the prescription information needed to start your enrollment process. 

After you are enrolled with CoaguChek Patient Services, you can choose one of four methods for reporting your results:

How to perform a self-test
Testing your INR with a CoaguChek Vantus or CoaguChek XS meter is convenient and easy.
Follow these simple steps to perform a self-test anywhere and at any time.*

1. Wash your hands in warm, soapy water. Be sure to rinse and dry thoroughly before testing.

2. Place the meter on a secure, level surface, such as a countertop or table, or hold it horizontally in your hand. 

3. Remove a CoaguChek XS PT Test strip from its container. Close the container immediately with the stopper.

4. Slide the CoaguChek PT Test strip into the meter in the direction of the arrows. Slide the test strip in as far as it will go.

5. Wait for your meter to warm up. An hourglass icon will appear on the display. Once you hear a beep, the meter is ready. You will then have 180 seconds to apply blood to the clear window on the strip. 

6. Use a fresh lancet and lancing device to draw a drop of blood from the side of your fingertip. It’s important to apply the blood drop to the strip within 15 seconds of drawing it. 


Tips to get a good blood sample:

     •  Gently shake your arm down at your side for about 30 seconds.

     •  Massage the finger to be pricked. 

     •  Warm your hand by holding it under your arm or using a hand warmer.

7. Apply the blood drop to the test strip until the meter beeps. The meter will beep again, and the results will appear – this is your INR value.

8. Report your results wirelessly to CoaguChek Link with the Bluetooth -enabled CoaguChek Vantus system and CoaguChek Patient Services.1 Alternatively, you can enter results online using a computer, or call them in over the phone.

*The CoaguChek XS system may be used up to a maximum altitude of 14,000 feet.  The CoaguChek Vantus system may be used up to a maximum 13,120 feet

1. Bluetooth connectivity requires a smartphone or tablet. Minimum specifications required. Call 1-800-780-0675 for a list of supported devices and operating systems.

Call CoaguChek Patient Services today at 1-800-780-0675 or view the Get Started Guide
Get Started Guide

Resources  / 

Diet and medication
Some foods and medications can lessen the effectiveness of your warfarin treatment.

To ensure your INR results are where they should be, it’s important to maintain a consistent, balanced, healthy diet. Here’s what you need to know before you start self-testing with a CoaguChek meter.


1. Watch your vitamin K intake.

Produced by your body as part of the clotting process, vitamin K is also found in many green, leafy foods, such as kale, lettuce, spinach and broccoli. High amounts of vitamin K can reverse warfarin’s blood-thinning effect.1 Does this mean you should cut back on foods high in vitamin K? No, but a consistent diet is important, as your doctor will base your recommended warfarin dose on your regular diet. Visit our newsletter library for more insights on the role of vitamin K in your diet.  


2. Avoid alcohol.

Because it immediately decreases your blood’s ability to clot, alcohol should be avoided when taking warfarin. Even if your INR levels remain within the target range, the risk of major bleeding is increased.2 What’s more, after episodes of excessive drinking, clotting can increase, putting you at greater risk of heart attack or stroke.3


3. Tell your doctor about other medications and supplements.

Because warfarin can interact with many drugs and supplements,4, 5, 6 tell your healthcare provider about everything you take, including these over-the-counter medications and supplements:
•  Acetaminophen (e.g., Tylenol)
•  Aspirin, including ointments/creams
•  Ibuprofen (e.g., Advil)
•  Naproxen (e.g., Aleve)
•  Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
•  Heartburn or acid reflux medicines (e.g., Nexium, Zantac)
•  Cold/allergy medicines
•  Antibiotics
•  Herbal supplements (e.g., Ginkgo biloba, ginseng, St. John’s wort)
•  Birth control pills
•  Vitamin supplements with vitamin K


1 Blood Thinner Pills: Your Guide to Using Them Safely. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. September 2015. Available at (accessed January 2018).
2 American Heart Association. “A patient’s guide to taking warfarin.” (accessed January 2018).
3 Renaud, S.C. and Ruf, J.C..(March 15, 1996). “Effects of alcohol on platelet functions.” Clinica Chimica Acta 246(1-2):77-89. (accessed January 2018).
4 Coumadin (warfarin sodium) [package insert 293US11PBS01503]. (2011). Princeton, NJ: Bristol-Myers Squibb.
5 Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. (August 2010). “Blood Thinner Pills: Your Guide to Using Them Safely.” (accessed January 2018).
6 Mayo Clinic. “Warfarin side effects: Watch for interactions.” (accessed January 2018).

Working with your doctor
Maintaining your relationship with your doctor helps maximize the benefits of your warfarin therapy, including self-testing with your CoaguChek meter.

Monitoring in accordance with your perscribed test frequency allows your doctor to respond with timely adjustments, which may help keep you in your target range more often – resulting in lower risk of complications and a healthier you. Here’s how to make the most out of your relationship:

1. Check your INR per your doctor’s prescribed frequency. With your CoaguChek Vantus or CoaguChek XS meter, you can do this from home.

2. If you use the CoaguChek Vantus and the CoaguChek Link Mobile app, results are transmitted wirelessly to CoaguChek Link via Bluetooth® technology.1 You can also report your results immediately - either online, or over the phone via automated serviceor live person. CoaguChek Patient Services can help you facilitate this.

3. Share with your doctor any relevant information, such as changes in your diet or lifestyle that may affect your INR results. This can include:

• Stress
• Missed doses
• Herbal supplements you’re considering taking
• New medications prescribed by other doctors
• Changes in your diet
• Alcohol intake

4. Adjust your warfarin dosage and testing schedule as directed by your doctor.

5. See your doctor regularly for follow-up visits.


1. Bluetooth connectivity requires a smartphone or tablet. Minimum specifications required. Call 1-800-780-0675 for a list of supported devices and operating systems.