Warfarin under attack - again

A new era of anticoagulation may well be taking off, if new and revised medical guidelines are anything to go by. Rivaroxaban has just been recommended by NICE (July 2012) as an option for treating deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and preventing recurrent DVT and pulmonary embolism (PE) in adults diagnosed with a DVT. This comes just two months after rivaroxaban was recommended by NICE as a possible treatment for stroke prevention in people with atrial fibrillation (AF) in May 2012 and four months after dabigatran was recommended for the same (March 2012).

A new era of anticoagulation may well be taking off, if new and revised medical guidelines are anything to go by. Rivaroxaban has just been recommended by NICE (July 2012) as an option for treating deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and preventing recurrent DVT and pulmonary embolism (PE) in adults diagnosed with a DVT. This comes just two months after rivaroxaban was recommended by NICE as a possible treatment for stroke prevention in people with atrial fibrillation (AF) in May 2012 and four months after dabigatran was recommended for the same (March 2012).

These are major developments as they are no doubt very appealing options for many people needing anticoagulation. Mainly, because unlike warfarin - the mainstay of anticoagulation - these two newer drugs do not require dosing adjustments and frequent blood tests to monitor treatment.

As usual, at patient.info, we aim to be quick off the mark to review and revise our articles to reflect recently published national guidelines such as these. Our AF articles have already been updated. Our revised DVT and PE articles will be ready very soon - to mention the new anticoagulation option - but also to reflect another NICE clinical guideline called 'Venous thromboembolic diseases' published in June.

Keeping track of new and revised guidelines, and reflecting their advice in our articles, is one of the core tasks for our medical authoring team. Other guidelines recently added to our guidelines database and on which our authors are currently tasked to review and amend articles where necessary include:

  • Current NICE guidelines
  • Evidence based guidelines for the pharmacological management of substance abuse, harmful use, addiction and comorbidity: recommendations from the British Association for Psychopharmacology, British Association for Psychopharmacology (2012)
  • Guidelines on the diagnosis and management of thrombocytopenic purpura and other thrombotic microangiopathies, British Committee for Standards in Haematology (2012)
  • Benign Prostatic Obstruction (BPO), European Association of Urology (2012)
  • Peyronie’s disease, Guidelines on Penile Curvature, European Association of Urology (2012)
I wonder, are people switching to these newer drugs in droves and will warfarin clinics soon become confined to history?