Eliquis (apixaban) is a prescription drug that’s used to treat or help prevent blood clots. The drug comes as an oral tablet. It’s usually taken twice per day.

Eliquis is used in adults:

The active ingredient in Eliquis is apixaban. An active ingredient is what makes a drug work. Eliquis is a type of medication called an anticoagulant.

This article describes the dosages of Eliquis, as well as its strengths and how to take it. To learn more about Eliquis, see this in-depth article.

Below is information about typical dosages of Eliquis.

Note: This chart highlights the basics of Eliquis’s dosage. Be sure to read on for more detail.

to prevent stroke and blood clots for atrial fibrillation (AFib)5 mg twice per day
to treat deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism (PE)10 milligrams (mg) twice per day for 7 days and then 5 mg twice per day for as long as directed by your doctor
to prevent DVT and PE2.5 mg twice per day
to prevent DVT after knee and hip replacement2.5 mg twice per day

What is the form of Eliquis?

Eliquis is available as tablets that you swallow.

What strengths does Eliquis come in?

Eliquis comes in two different strengths:

  • 2.5 mg
  • 5 mg

What are the usual dosages of Eliquis?

Your doctor will start you on the right amount of Eliquis based on the reason for its use. They’ll ultimately prescribe the smallest dosage that provides the desired effect.

Your dosage for Eliquis will depend on:

  • the reason you’re taking the drug
  • other medications you may be taking
  • other conditions you may have
  • how you react to Eliquis
  • your age

The information below describes dosages that are commonly used or recommended. But be sure to take the dosage your doctor prescribes for you. They’ll determine the best dosage to fit your needs.

Dosage for preventing blood clots and stroke in people with AFib

The typical recommended dosage for most people with nonvalvular AFib is 5 mg taken twice per day.

But in some cases, your doctor may prescribe a lower starting dose.

Your doctor may recommend that you start with Eliquis 2.5 mg twice per day if at least two of these apply to you:

  • you’re age 80 years or older
  • you weigh less than or equal to 60 kilograms (kg)*
  • you have serious kidney problems

* One kg is equal to about 2.2 pounds (lb). So, 60 kg is about 132 lb.

Dosage for treating DVT and PE

The typical Eliquis dosage to treat DVT and PE is 10 mg twice per day. You’ll take this dosage for the first 7 days of treatment.

After this, your doctor will typically lower your dosage to 5 mg twice per day. You’ll take this dosage for as long as your doctor recommends.

Dosage for preventing DVT and PE

The typical Eliquis dosage for preventing DVT and PE is typically 2.5 mg twice per day.

You’ll take this dosage after taking the recommended Eliquis dosage for treating DVT and PE for at least 6 months. (See the “Dosage for treating DVT and PE” section above.)

You’ll take this preventive dosage for as long as your doctor feels it’s needed.

Dosage for preventing DVT after hip or knee replacement

People undergoing knee and hip replacement surgery have a higher risk of blood clots after surgery. This is why your doctor may prescribe Eliquis to lower your risk.

The typical dosage of Eliquis for hip and knee replacement is 2.5 mg taken twice per day. You’ll take your first dose at least 12 to 24 hours before your scheduled surgery.

  • for knee surgery, you’ll continue taking Eliquis for 12 days
  • for hip replacement surgery, you’ll continue taking Eliquis for 35 days

Your doctor will provide instructions on when to begin taking Eliquis before your surgery. They’ll also tell you how long you need to continue the medication after surgery.

Is Eliquis used long term?

Yes, Eliquis may be used as a long-term treatment in some circumstances. If you and your doctor determine that it’s safe and effective for your condition, you’ll likely take it long term.

If your doctor prescribes Eliquis for you, they’ll explain how long you’re likely to take the medication.

Dosage adjustments

You may need dosage adjustments for Eliquis in some cases.

This depends on:

  • whether you have kidney problems, such as kidney stones
  • how you respond to Eliquis treatment
  • your age
  • your body weight
  • the condition being treated

Your doctor will monitor you while you’re taking Eliquis. They’ll adjust your dosage if it’s needed to manage your condition.

If you have questions about your dosage, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

Below are answers to some commonly asked questions about Eliquis’s dosage.

Does Eliquis require dosage adjustments for older adults?

Yes, this is possible in certain situations. Eliquis is used to lower the risk of blood clots or stroke in people with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (AFib). Older adults with AFib, specifically those age 80 years or older, may need dosage adjustments of Eliquis in some cases.

You may need a lower dosage if at least two of the following apply to you:

  • you’re age 80 years or older
  • you weigh less than or equal to 60 kilograms (kg)
  • you have severe kidney problems, such as chronic kidney disease

In this case, your doctor may lower your dosage for Eliquis to 2.5 mg taken twice per day. This is to lower your risk of side effects of the drug.

If you have questions about your dosage, ask your doctor for more information.

* One kg is equal to about 2.2 pounds (lb). So, 60 kg is about 132 lb.

Is there a once-per-day dosing for Eliquis?

No, Eliquis is typically prescribed twice daily. In the drug’s clinical studies, a twice-daily dosage regimen was found to be effective for the conditions Eliquis is approved to treat.

Do not change your dosing schedule or dose of Eliquis on your own. This can increase your risk of developing blood clots or other serious side effects. If you have questions about your dosage or dosing schedule, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.

The dosage of Eliquis you’re prescribed may depend on several factors. These include:

  • the type and severity of the condition you’re using the drug to treat
  • your age and body weight
  • other conditions you may have (see “Dosage adjustments” just above)
  • other medications you may be taking
  • how you respond to the medication

Eliquis comes as tablets you swallow. You can take Eliquis with or without food. Take the medication exactly as directed by your doctor. Do not stop taking the medication without talking with your doctor first.

Eliquis is taken twice per day. Try to take each dose at around the same time each day to have consistent levels of the medication in your body.

If you have trouble swallowing tablets, see this article for tips on how to take this form of medication.

For information on the expiration, storage, and disposal of Eliquis, see this article.

Accessible drug containers and labels

If you find it hard to read the prescription label on your medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist. Some pharmacies provide medication labels that:

  • have large print or use braille
  • feature a code you can scan with a smartphone to change the text to audio

Your doctor or pharmacist may be able to recommend pharmacies that offer these accessibility features if your current pharmacy doesn’t.

If you have trouble opening medication bottles, let your pharmacist know. They may be able to supply Eliquis in an easy-open container. They may also have tips to help make it simpler to open the drug’s container.

If you miss taking your normal dose of Eliquis, take it as soon as you remember. But do not take two doses of Eliquis at once to make up for a missed dose. This can increase your risk of serious side effects.

Remember, it’s important to take your doses of Eliquis as directed to lower your risk of blood clots.

If you need help remembering to take your dose of Eliquis on time, try using a medication reminder. This can include setting an alarm or downloading a reminder app on your phone.

Do not take more Eliquis than your doctor prescribes. This can lead to serious, life threatening bleeding.

Symptoms of overdose

Symptoms caused by an overdose can include:

What to do in case you take too much Eliquis

Call your doctor right away if you think you’ve taken too much Eliquis. Your doctor may recommend that you take activated charcoal. This should only be done under your doctor’s supervision.

You can also call 800-222-1222 to reach the American Association of Poison Control Centers or use its online resource. But if you have severe symptoms, immediately call 911 (or your local emergency number) or go to the nearest emergency room.

The sections above describe the usual dosages provided by the drugmaker. If your doctor recommends Eliquis for you, they’ll prescribe the dosage that’s right for you.

Remember, you should not change your dosage of Eliquis without your doctor’s recommendation. Only take Eliquis exactly as prescribed. Talk with your doctor if you have questions or concerns about your current dosage.

Here are some examples of questions you may want to ask your doctor:

  • Does my dosage of Eliquis need to change if it’s not working for me?
  • Would I experience more side effects with a higher dose of Eliquis?
  • Are there other treatment options if Eliquis isn’t managing my condition?

To learn more about Eliquis, see these articles:

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Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.