For the past four years Hart Biologicals, specialists in haemostasis and in vitro diagnostics, has been working alongside one woman with a unique set of requirements. 

Rhona Ferguson suffers from a rare congenital cardiac complaint causing high haemoglobin and haematocrit levels, so has used Hart Bio’s Thrombistat blood monitoring unit since 2014 to keep track of her condition.

Hart Bio spoke to Rhona in 2017 about how the Thrombistat MC1 helped to manage her condition. Rhona has now given an update on life with a rare health condition – and talked about how Hart Bio’s products help her.

She said: “Since the last time we spoke my International Normalised Ratio (INR) started to not be so static and, for this reason, I was seen more regularly at clinic until it became more stable.

“It had settled a little better by the end of 2018, but I was due to get dental work done meaning I needed to take antibiotics.  

“Everyone involved was wary of what would happen when I took a large dose of antibiotics in one go as it could affect the warfarin I was taking, and it was at this time that my Thrombistat got a lot of use.” 

The Thrombistat MC1 is an effective and precise solution for measuring the INR results from a capillary whole blood sample.

She continued: “I was advised to check my INR the day before the dentist in order that my dose of warfarin could be adjusted to get me in a better range pre-dentist, if need be.  

“That proved to work very well.”  

Rhona needed to re-test her INR after around 24 to 48 hours and was informed by the anticoagulant nurse to send in her results at the same time every day in order for any retesting to be discussed.

Rhona continued: “During that time my testing showed that, although still in range, my INR was creeping up gradually and it was agreed that I should keep testing daily just to be safe. 

“72 hours after the dental work I developed a side effect from the antibiotics I was given and required antifungal treatment.” 

It was known by the anticoagulant team overseeing Rhona that antifungals would increase her INR so they had agreed she should test her INR daily again. 

Rhona has visited the clinic weekly to make sure that her INR is back in range to prevent haemoptysis.  

Haemoptysisis the medical term for coughing up blood that comes from the lungs or bronchial tubes. 

Rhona concluded: “I can't tell you what a blessing my Thrombistat has been, as I really have no other way of testing myself. 

“Due to the fact I live in a rural location, blood samples deteriorate too much en-route to the lab and Coaguchek cannot read my INR due to high haemoglobin and haematocrit in my blood.  

“Having my own Thrombistat has definitely changed my life and has cut out unnecessary hospital visits.

“I regularly think of Paul at Hart Biologicals and all the effort he put in at the start to help me get my own machine. I can't thank him and my GP enough for being so forward thinking - it’s been life changing. 

“All the team at Hart Bio are so helpful when I need new product. They are so efficient and there are never any issues.”   

She added: “It's just over 4 years since I got my machine and I can honestly say I have never looked back.”

For more information about the Thrombistat MC1 system, click here.