Novel oral anticoagulants are approved in the UK for:
- Prevention of stroke and systemic embolism in adult patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation with one or more risk factors
- Treatment and prevention of recurrent deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism
They are also used short-term to prevent venous thromboembolism in adults undergoing elective hip or knee replacement surgery.
The need for effective treatment and prevention of thromboembolic events is clear:
Each year in England, approximately 110,000 people have a first or recurrent stroke. More than 900,000 people in England are living with the effects of stroke (NICE, 2008)
Stroke risk in patients diagnosed with atrial fibrillation increases from 1.5% in the fifth decade of life to 23.5% in patients aged more than 80 years, underlining the need for effective treatment.
As a result of inadequate compliance with anticoagulants, postoperative thromboembolism occurs in up to 10% of patients undergoing hip or knee replacement.
In England, stroke is estimated to cost the economy around £7 billion per year (NICE, 2008)
Dispensed volumes increased early on in the programme, and within six months the increase in dispensed volumes reached 5% growth, suggesting the programme has a significant positive impact on medication compliance.