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Safer, Newer Blood Thinners Are Under-Prescribed for Elderly & at-Risk Patients

Medical Xpress
Photo: Unsplash/CC0 Public Domain

Patients with atrial fibrillation are at risk of forming clots that can migrate to the brain and cause dangerous strokes; these can be prevented by chronic administration of blood-thinning drugs (anticoagulants). Introduced to the market in the past decade, direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) are a much safer option for patients with atrial fibrillation than traditional warfarin treatment, in addition to being much more convenient because of the tight blood-sample monitoring and regular dose adjustment needed for warfarin treatment.

Although these new DOAC drugs were intended to eliminate some of the difficulties that elderly ...