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A Journal on Heart and Vascular Diseases

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Angiology and Vascular Pathology
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Minerva Cardioangiologica 2016 August;64(4):494-6

language: English

Failure of old and new anticoagulants to prevent ischemic stroke in high-risk atrial fibrillation: a case report

Franca BILORA 1, Angelo ADAMO 1, Fabio POMERRI 2, Paolo PRANDONI 1

1 Internal Medicine Clinic, Coagulopathy Section, Department of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Sciences, Padua University, Padua, Italy; 2 Radiology Institute, Department of Medicine, DIMED, Padua University, Padua, Italy


Rivaroxaban is an oral anticoagulant that acts as a direct, competitive factor Xa inhibitor. Large randomized clinical trials have shown that, at a daily dose of 20 mg, Rivaroxaban is at least as effective as dose-adjusted warfarin for the prevention of stroke or other embolic complications in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (AF). The safety and efficacy of combining Rivaroxaban with an antiplatelet agent for secondary stroke prevention has not been established.
We report the case of an elderly patient with permanent AF and coronary heart disease, who had already suffered an ischemic stroke while on warfarin treatment, and was consequently switched to treatment with an association of Rivaroxaban and Aspirin. Her CHA2DS2-VASc score was 9. The patient developed a severe recurrent disabling ischemic stroke. This case goes to show that the novel direct anticoagulants may fail to prevent recurrent stroke in patients at particularly high risk, even when associated with antiplatelet drugs.

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