Table of Contents
Journal of Angiology
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 874827, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/874827
Review Article

Anticoagulation for Atrial Fibrillation: Is This the End of Warfarin? Not Just Yet

1Department of Medicine, Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge University Health Partners, Cambridge CB2 0QQ, UK
2Department of Cardiology, Royal Brompton Hospital, London and Imperial College London, Sydney Street, London SW3 6NP, UK

Received 30 April 2013; Accepted 23 June 2013

Academic Editor: Hironori Nakagami

Copyright © 2013 Michael Mallouppas and Vassilios Vassiliou. 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

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common cardiac arrhythmia. Its prevalence is known to increase with age and with an aging population AF is likely to become even more common. Although sometimes patients with AF remain asymptomatic, it is now recognized that AF is far from “benign” conferring a significant risk increase in morbidity and mortality. Restoration of sinus rhythm and rate-limiting medication help with symptoms; however, anticoagulation remains essential in reducing thromboembolic risk. The uptake of appropriate anticoagulation with vitamin K antagonists has increased significantly in the last few decades and this review will analyze whether the new oral anticoagulants might prove to be even more effective than existing vitamin K antagonists.