New generation blood thinners show promise
In a groundbreaking study from the University of Gothenburg, modern blood-thinning drugs, commonly known as NOACs (oral anticoagulants without vitamin K), were shown to reduce the risk of serious bleeding by up to 45% compared to the traditional drug warfarin, also known by the brand name Waran .
A new paradigm in blood thinning drugs
Warfarin has been a standard treatment to prevent blood clots for over fifty years. However, thanks to previous studies showing their effectiveness in short-term treatments, NOACs have gradually gained the upper hand.
This comprehensive study now confirms the benefits of NOACs, particularly apixaban, sold under the brand name Eliquis, in both the short-term and long-term treatment of blood clots in the legs and lungs.
The Swedish study
The study is based on a registry that includes 45,000 patients treated for blood clots between 2014 and 2020. The research shows a clear advantage for NOACs, particularly apixaban.
Katarina Glise Sandblad, the study’s lead author, says: “We see that apixaban is associated with a reduced risk of bleeding compared to warfarin, both in the short and long term.”
The short-term risk of bleeding is also lower compared to rivaroxaban (Xarelto).”
Monitor lizard still has a role to play
Although the prescribing rate for warfarin is declining, it still remains relevant in certain situations.
Sandblad emphasizes: “Today, when Waran is prescribed for a patient for the first time, it is usually for good reason.”
Patients with certain medical conditions, such as atrial fibrillation, mechanical heart valves, or bleeding disorders, may still need warfarin. However, for the vast majority, switching to a NOAK could be more beneficial.
The study shows that apixaban is an effective and safer alternative to warfarin for treating blood clots in the legs and lungs.
These findings could have a significant impact on the decisions doctors make when prescribing blood thinners and open new doors to safer and more effective treatments for patients worldwide.
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