For 57 years, doctors and patients have eagerly awaited an adequate substitute for the maligned blood thinner, warfarin.
Now they are here. Boy are they ever. There has been oodles written about the new blood thinners, dabigatran (Pradaxa), rivaroxaban (Xarelto) and apixaban (soon to be Eliquis).
As you might expect, thinning the blood with a potent drug is controversial. Like most things medical, how one sees a particular therapy depends a lot on the vantage point of the observer. That’s called parallax.
ER doctors, neurosurgeons and safety advocates see these new and novel drugs one way–mostly as risky. Heart docs charged with preventing strokes in patients with AF view the new blood thinners as less risky and more effective than warfarin–a rodenticide. Patients are drawn to the new drugs’ convenience and lack of major dietary or drug-drug interactions.
I hope that you might peek at my most recent take, published today on the Trials and Fibrillations blog over at theHeart.org