How is a novel anticoagulant different from warfarin for treating A Fib?

Douglas E. Severance, MD
Family Medicine
Atrial fibrillation (also called A Fib) is a common heart rhythm disorder that can lead to an ischemic stroke. An ischemic stroke happens when the blood supply to the brain is blocked by a blood clot. A novel anticoagulant works to “thin the blood” and help prevent clot formation, yet it does not work the same as warfarin, an older blood thinner. Warfarin prevents clotting by blocking or inhibiting several substances that are required for blood clot formation. These substances are called clotting factors, and all of them must work correctly in order for a new blood clot to form. A novel anticoagulant targets only one of the many factors involved in clot formation. A novel anticoagulant may be more specific and have fewer drug interactions than an older anticoagulant like warfarin.

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