Warfarin Keeps Stroke Risk Low in Patients With A-Fib

Review shows risk of stroke per year higher in the elderly, females, patients with stroke history

WEDNESDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- Use of warfarin for stroke prevention in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with a low risk of stroke or systemic embolism, according to a meta-analysis published in the April 23 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.

Shikhar Agarwal, M.D., M.P.H., from the Cleveland Clinic, and colleagues conducted a literature review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials to assess warfarin treatment for stroke prevention in patients with AF. Eligible studies compared warfarin with an alternative thromboprophylaxis strategy, included at least 400 patients in the warfarin arm, and reported stroke as an efficacy outcome.

The researchers found that the eight eligible studies included 55,789 patient-years of warfarin therapy follow-up. For patients with AF taking warfarin, the annual incidence of stroke or systemic embolism was estimated to be 1.66 percent, while rates of major bleeding ranged across the studies, from 1.40 to 3.40 percent per year. There was a significantly higher stroke risk per year for elderly patients (2.27 percent), female patients (2.12 percent), patients with a history of stroke (2.64 percent), and patients with no previous exposure to vitamin K antagonists (1.96 percent). The annual incidence of stroke was significantly increased with progressively increasing scores of CHADS2 (congestive heart failure, hypertension, age, diabetes, and prior stroke).

"Current use of warfarin as a stroke prevention agent in patients with AF is associated with a low rate of residual stroke or systemic embolism estimated to be 1.66 percent per year," the authors write.

Abstract
Full Text (subscription or payment may be required)
Editorial (subscription or payment may be required)

Copyright © 2012 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Powered by

jQuery UI Accordion - Default functionality

For life-long learning and continuing professional development, come to Lippincott's NursingCenter.

Nursing Jobs Plus
Featured Jobs
Recommended CE Articles

Debunking Three Rape Myths
Journal of Forensic Nursing, October/December 2014
Expires: 12/31/2016 CE:2.5 $24.95


Drug updates and approvals: 2014 in review
The Nurse Practitioner, 13December 2014
Expires: 12/31/2016 CE:3 $27.95


Can Food Processing Enhance Cancer Protection?
Nutrition Today, September/October 2014
Expires: 10/31/2016 CE:2 $21.95


More CE Articles

Subscribe to Recommended CE

Recommended Nursing Articles Evidence Based Practice Skin Care Network NursingCenter Quick Links What’s Trending Events