Xarelto Lowers Repeat Blood Clot Risk Better Than Aspirin

Xarelto Lowers Repeat Blood Clot Risk Better Than Aspirin

"We hope that this study, which shows the blood thinner rivaroxaban, is as safe as aspirin but much more effective at preventing future clots, will convince patients and their physicians to continue life-long medication that can prevent potentially unsafe blood clots".

The results of the EINSTEIN CHOICE trial looked at the value of extended treatment of patients with venous thromboembolism (VTE).

The large worldwide study of 3,396 patients with venous thromboembolism in 31 countries shows, however, that rivaroxaban is more effective than aspirin. The study was funded by Bayer AG.

Venous thromboembolism is a chronic disease, with risks of additional blood clots over a patient's lifetime. Many physicians and patients are now opting out of long-term treatment with blood thinners because of concern about the risk of bleeding. Some are choosing aspirin instead because they consider it to be safer.

"Not only that, but in testing two doses of rivaroxaban, we found that we have the option of lowering the daily dose for extended treatment", said Dr. Jeffrey Weitz, principal investigator of the study and professor of medicine and biochemistry and biomedical sciences at the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine at McMaster University.

"Once approved, rivaroxaban 10mg once daily, alongside the now approved 20mg once daily, will provide doctors with an additional weapon in their armamentarium in the battle to reduce the risk of recurrent VTEs, alleviating some of the pressure on our hospitals, reducing VTE-related deaths and improving the quality of life for people who have experienced an unprovoked VTE or are living with ongoing risk factors", Dr Cohen added. The rates of major bleeding were 0.3 percent in the group taking aspirin, and 0.5 percent and a 0.4 percent in the groups taking 20 mg and 10mg of rivaroxaban, respectively.

In patients with VTE, anticoagulation therapy is recommended for three months or longer, depending on the balance between the risk of recurrence and the risk of bleeding; the risk for patients with unprovoked VTE or with ongoing risk factors experiencing a second event is up to 10 percent in the first year if treatment is stopped, Bayer noted. Inhibition of Factor Xa interrupts the intrinsic and extrinsic pathway of the blood coagulation cascade, inhibiting both thrombin formation and development of thrombi.

Venous thromboembolism affects more than 900,000 Americans each year and are the third most common vascular diagnosis after heart attack and stroke, according to the American Heart Association.