Confidence in the Use of Direct Oral Anticoagulants in the Acute Phase of Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation-Related Ischemic Stroke Over the Years: A Real-World Single-Center Study.

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Confidence in the Use of Direct Oral Anticoagulants in the Acute Phase of Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation-Related Ischemic Stroke Over the Years: A Real-World Single-Center Study.

J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis. 2018 Jan;27(1):76-82

Authors: Moroni F, Masotti L, Vannucchi V, Chiarelli R, Seravalle C, Pesci A, Pallini F, Puliti S, Cimolato B, Fattorini L, Scerra C, Ristori F, Imbalzano ML, Spolveri S, Landini G, Grifoni E, Paciaroni M

Abstract
BACKGROUD AND AIM: The use of direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF)-related acute ischemic stroke (AIS) is controversial. The aims of our study were to analyze physicians' confidence in prescribing DOACs in NVAF-related AIS, the characteristics of patients receiving DOACs, and their 90-day prognosis.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: Clinical records of consecutive patients admitted to our wards for NVAF-related AIS over the years 2014-2016 were reviewed.
RESULTS: One hundred forty-seven patients, 72.7% females, mean age ± standard deviation 83.4 ± 8.8 years, were admitted to our ward for atrial fibrillation (AF)-related AIS (38 in 2014, 47 in 2015, 62 in 2016). Of these patients, 141 had NVAF-related AIS. Median length of hospital stay was 8 days (interquartile range [IQR], 6-11). In-hospital mortality was 10.8%. Ninety-eight patients (69.5%) received DOACs for secondary prevention, with increasing percentages from 2014 (62.5%) to 2016 (88%). In 88% of them, DOACs were started during hospital stay, whereas in 12% DOACs were started during ambulatory follow-up. The median time for starting DOACs was 5 days (IQR, 3-8). In patients receiving DOACs, the median National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score was 6 (IQR, 3-12), and large ischemic lesions were present in 48%; the median modified Rankin Scale score at hospital discharge was 3 (IQR, 1-4), whereas the score at 90 days was 2 (IQR, 1-3). At the 90-day follow-up, in patients receiving DOACs, overall mortality was 3.0%, stroke recurrence was 1%, and no patients had major intracranial or extracranial bleedings.
CONCLUSION: Our study suggests that physicians are becoming increasingly confident in the use of DOACs in NVAF-related AIS. The use of DOACs seems effective and safe even when started in the acute phase of stroke.

PMID: 28918086 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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