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NICE recommends new treatment option for people with common heart condition

30 Mar 12

Following the receipt of further evidence from Bayer HealthCare of the clinical and cost effectiveness of its drug rivaroxaban (Xarelto), NICE has published final draft guidance recommending rivaroxaban as an option for the prevention of stroke and systemic embolism in people with atrial fibrillation.

Atrial fibrillation (AF) occurs when the electrical impulses controlling the heart rhythm become disorganised, so that the heart beats irregularly and, occasionally, too fast and so cannot efficiently pump blood around the body. People with AF are at higher risk of developing blood clots and subsequent stroke (with an approximately five-fold greater risk than that of people without AF) because the erratic heart rhythm of AF causes turbulent blood flow within the heart chambers. However, the risk of stroke can be substantially reduced by appropriate use of antithrombotic therapy, such as warfarin.

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