Oral anticoagulation therapy can lower the risk for recurrent blood vessel-blocking blood clots in patients with atrial fibrillation who had a stroke, reveals a new study.
Patients with atrial fibrillation (abnormal heart rhythm) are at increased risk of ischemic stroke and oral anticoagulation therapy (OAC) can reduce that risk. Underse of OAC has been reported in both Europe and the United States.
About 30,626 Danish patients with atrial fibrillation admitted with ischemic stroke (when a blood clot blocks a blood vessel to the brain).
This was an observational study. Researchers were not intervening for purposes of the study and they cannot control natural differences that could explain study findings.
The authors of the study were Anna Gundlund, M.D., of Herlev and Gentofte Hospital, Denmark, and coauthors.
The limitations of the study are that registries didn't include factors such as alcohol consumption or fall tendency; possible misclassification of ischemic stroke; results may have been skewed by patient compliance with medications; all types of AF included in study, which could have influenced physician's choice of antithrombotic therapy.