Venous thromboembolism (VTE), consisting of deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism, is a major clinical concern associated with significant morbidity and mortality. The cornerstone of management of VTE is anticoagulation, and traditional anticoagulants include parenteral heparins and oral vitamin K antagonists. Recently, new oral anticoagulant drugs have been developed and licensed, including direct factor Xa inhibitors (e.g. rivaroxaban, apixaban and edoxaban) and thrombin inhibitors (e.g. dabigatran etexilate). This narrative review focusses on the characteristics of these direct anticoagulants and the main results of published clinical studies on their use in the prevention and treatment of VTE.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine