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Advances in Hematology
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 196135, 12 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/196135
Review Article

Role of Factor Xa Inhibitors in Cancer-Associated Thrombosis: Any New Data?

1Pharmacy Clinical Programs, Division of Pharmacy, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA
2Section of Benign Hematology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA
3Department of Cardiology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA
4Department of General Internal Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA

Received 21 July 2011; Revised 10 August 2011; Accepted 11 August 2011

Academic Editor: Shaji Kumar

Copyright © 2011 Ali Zalpour et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The association between cancer and venous thromboembolism (VTE) has been well documented in the literature. Prevention and treatment of VTE in cancer patients is imperative. Typically, the mainstay regimen for VTE prevention and treatment has been anticoagulation therapy, unless contraindicated. This therapy consists of unfractionated heparin (UFH), low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH), factor Xa inhibitor, or vitamin K antagonist (VKA). Current guidelines recommend LMWH over VKA for the treatment of VTE in cancer patients. Factor-specific anticoagulants have been proven safe and effective, and recently factor Xa inhibitors have emerged as a treatment alternative to heparins and VKA. Currently, three factor Xa inhibitors have been identified: fondaparinux (the only one approved so far by the US Food and Drug Administration), idraparinux (in clinical trials), and idrabiotaparinux (in clinical trials). This paper will examine the role of these agents, focusing on fondaparinux, for the prevention and treatment of VTE in cancer patients.