Comparative non-persistence in the first year of treatment with oral anticoagulants in patients with atrial fibrillation: A French comprehensive nationwide study

Danchin N, Steg G, Mahé I, Hanon O, Jacoud F, Nolin M, Dalon F, Cotte FE, Gollety S, Van Ganse E, Belhassen M

Arch Cardiovasc Dis. 2022 Sep. Online ahead of print. 

Abstract

Background: Direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) were developed as an alternative to vitamin K antagonists (VKAs) and are commonly used for stroke prevention in patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF). Unlike VKAs, DOACs do not require Internal Normalized Ratio (INR) monitoring, but regular intake is as important for effective anticoagulation.

Objectives: This study examined treatment persistence among patients receiving oral anticoagulants (OACs) for NVAF.

Methods: Within the French healthcare claims database (SNDS), we assessed and compared the rates of non-persistence (≥ 30-day treatment gap) among patients with NVAF initiating an OAC between January 2014 and December 2016. The time-to-event of non-persistence was computed and plotted using a cumulative incidence function accounting for the competing risk of mortality. After adjusting on confounding factors, the risk for non-persistence was compared between apixaban and each other OACs using a Cox proportional hazard model, or Fine and Gray models.

Results: In a cohort of 321,501 OAC-naive patients with NVAF, the cumulative incidence of non-persistence at 12 months considering competing risk was 44.3%, 31.0%, 41.3% and 46.8% for VKAs, apixaban, rivaroxaban and dabigatran, respectively. Median therapy duration before non-persistence ranged between 70 and 121 days. Non-persistence was lower with apixaban compared with VKAs (HR=0.63, 95%CI=[0.62-0.64]), rivaroxaban (HR=0.71, 95%CI=[0.70-0.73]), and dabigatran (HR=0.60, 95%CI=[0.59-0.62]).

Conclusions: In this nationwide observational study, non-persistence rates of oral anticoagulant treatment were high in patients treated for NVAF. Apixaban-treated patients seem to experience lowest discontinuation rates 12 months after treatment initiation compared to patients treated with any other OAC.
Keywords: Anticoagulants; Claims analysis; Drug utilization; Observational study; Persistence

DOI: 10.1016  PMID: 36257903

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