Agnė Česnauskaitė, Andrius Montrimas, Diana Rinkūnienė, Aras Puodžiukynas
Background: Limited data exists addressing the daily use of anticoagulants for atrial fibrillation (AF) and atrial flutter (AFL) patients before and after electrical cardioversion (ECV) or catheter ablation procedures. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the appropriateness of anticoagulant therapy.
Methods: We evaluated the prescribed dosage of anticoagulant therapy for 257 non-valvular AF and AFL patients scheduled for ECV or catheter ablation and the appropriateness of periprocedural anticoagulation according to European Society of Cardiology (ESC) AF Guidelines. The statistical analysis was performed using IBM SPSS Statistics software (v.26.0).
Results: The majority of the patients (84%) used nonvitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants (NOACs) for pre-procedural anticoagulation. An intervention was not performed for 12.2% of warfarin users because of insufficient hypocoagulation, while anamnesis of patients’ missed doses with a possibility of inadequate hypocoagulation occurred only in 1.9% of patients on NOACs. The odds of having insufficient pre-procedural hypocoagulation were 7.4 times higher for warfarin users compared to the NOACs group (p=0.001, OR=7.4). An incorrect NOAC dose was assigned to 22 (8.6%) patients. Rivaroxaban was the most prescribed NOAC and this group of patients had the highest percentage of incorrect dosage according to the ESC guidelines.
Conclusions: Mistakes of prescribing the dosage of anticoagulant therapy are common. The majority of the patients in the study were prescribed with NOACs before and after ECV or catheter ablation procedures. Warfarin users had higher odds of the intervention not being performed and not reaching sufficient hypocoagulation prior to the procedure compared to NOACs users.
Keyword(s): novel oral anticoagulants, electrical cardioversion, radiofrequency ablation, atrial fibrillation, atrial flutter.