Sometimes, when blood-related issues arise, healthcare providers often conduct a blood test using INR testing machine to determine the status-quo of your blood. Several common health conditions and symptoms usually lead healthcare providers to request this procedure: chronic anemia, nosebleeds, bloody stool or urine, bleeding gums, heavy menstruation, and excessive bruising.
What Is the INR Test?
INR – International Normalized Ratio – is often referred to as prothrombin time (PT). An INR ensures that all physicians are able to read and understand the result irrespective of the techniques used to obtain that result. INR is designed to make the PT test more straightforward to understand, which is why most labs provide you with the results in INR, not a full PT test data.
The test helps determine the duration it takes for your blood to clot. It also helps in concluding your blood consistency and health. This test is crucial as your healthcare provider uses the result to determine if you need medicine to prevent abnormal blood clots. In some instances, the INR test is done before surgeries such as weight loss surgery to avoid any blood complications during the procedure.
Why Do I Need INR Regularly?
No doubt, the INR test can be used for other several purposes. However, it is specially designed to help monitor if a particular prescribed anticoagulant drug is active. Most prescribed anticoagulant is Warfarin, commonly known as Coumadin. The prescription is meant to tackle abnormalities in blood clotting, which usually forms in the legs and lungs. The drug thins the blood, leading to reduced risk of stroke, heart attack, and other severe cardiovascular complications.
Therefore, it is crucial that you regularly check the effect of this drug to avoid any health issues due to the intake of the medication. The INR test monitors your wellness, ensuring you take the right dosage without leading to excessive bleeding.
Does Medicare Cover INR Testing?
The good news is that Medicare now covers self INR testing, provided you have been on anticoagulant drugs for at least three months before commencing the use of a coagulation meter. Since March 19, 2008, Medicare has effectively covered 80% of the service once you’ve been able to meet up with the annual deductible. However, the remaining 20% is often covered by another secondary or supplemental insurance, and it is billed under medical benefits – this depends on your insurance plan and policy.
Always contact a BGA Insurance agent if you are unsure about your coverage plan. This service is free and we can often save you money!