Background Rivaroxaban (Riv) is a selective, direct Factor Xa inhibitor indicated in the prevention of venous thromboembolism in adult patients undergoing elective hip or knee replacement surgery (HKRS).  It was introduced into the pharmacotherapeutic formulary of the Hospital Centre of Cova da Beira (CHCB) in February 2011. It is administered orally, which is a potential advantage in terms of compliance when compared to enoxaparin (Eno).
Purpose To compare adherence to Eno versus Riv in adult patients undergoing elective HKRS. The occurrence of adverse drug reactions (ADRs) was also compared between the groups.
Materials and Methods Cross-sectional study of outpatient compliance to Eno or Riv, in patients undergoing KHRS in CHCB, from February/2011 to April/2012. Medicines adherence was evaluated using a validated questionnaire and the occurrence of ADRs was evaluated in a structured interview.
Results The study included a total of 60 patients, who underwent elective knee (29 patients) or hip (31 patients) surgery; 41 patients were treated with Eno (17 knee + 24 hip) and 19 with Riv (12 knee + 7 hip). In all, 91.7% patients were considered adherent to the treatment, but a significant difference (P = 1) was not observed between patients anticoagulated with Eno (92.7% adherent) or Riv (89.5% adherent). Similarly, there was no significant difference (P = 0.35) in treatment adherence between patients undergoing knee or hip surgery. However, there was a significantly higher occurrence of ADRs (P = 0.001) in patients treated with Eno (39.0%; hematoma at the site of injection) when compared to patients treated with Riv (no ADRs were attributable to this drug).
Conclusions Although a significant difference in adherence to subcutaneous Eno vs oral Riv was not observed, which may be potentially attributed to the short-term anticoagulation treatment (2 to 5 weeks), the occurrence of ADRs was significantly lower in patients treated with the oral anticoagulant. This difference in drug-related adverse events differs from other studies that detected similar adverse-event profiles. From a methodological point of view, this is a small cross-sectional study and our results must be considered exploratory in nature.
Abrams PJ, Emerson CR. Rivaroxaban: A novel, oral, direct factor Xa inhibitor. Pharmacotherapy. 2009;29(2):167–181.
Lassen MR, Ageno W, Borris LC, Lieberman JR, Rosencher N, Bandel TJ, et al, Rivaroxaban versus enoxaparin for thromboprophylaxis after total knee arthroplasty. N Engl J Med 2008;358:2776–86.
No conflict of interest.
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