Great news yesterday. Health Canada approved apixaban (Eliquis) for stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation. http://m.theheart.org/article/1483463.do. It joins dabigatran (Pradax) and rivaroxaban (Xarelto) as oral anticoagulants that do not require blood testing. All three of these are great options for patients and much easier to use than warfarin, which they are meant to replace.
I do not know this drug as well as the other two yet. But it’s initial data are very promising. Less stroke than patients treated on warfarin and a much lower bleeding risk. From what I do know, it looks very promising. I will come up to speed quickly, rest assured!
Warfarin remains a reasonable option for some, and it is the only appropriate option for some patients, e.g. those with mechanical heart valves. But for many patients these new drugs are a great option and much easier to use. These drugs have transformed how we try to prevent stroke in patients with atrial fibrillation.
Any thoughts or experience with these new drugs?? Let me know, leave me a comment!
Until next time,
Dr. John Vyselaar