Contemporary trends and barriers to oral anticoagulation therapy in Non-valvular atrial fibrillation during DOAC predominant era

Ojasav Sehrawat, Anthony H. Kashou, Holly K. Van Houten, Ken Cohen, Henry Joe Henk, Bernard J. Gersh, Neena S. Abraham, Jonathan Graff-Radford, Paul A. Friedman, Konstantinos C. Siontis, Peter A. Noseworthy, Xiaoxi Yao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


There is a need to reassess contemporary oral anticoagulation (OAC) trends and barriers against guideline directed therapy in the United States. Most previous studies were performed before major guideline changes recommended direct oral anticoagulant (DOAC) use over warfarin or have otherwise lacked patient level data. Data on overuse of OAC in low-risk group is also limited. To address these knowledge gaps, we performed a nationwide analysis to analyze current trends. This is a retrospective cohort study assessing non-valvular AF identified using a large United States de-identified administrative claims database, including commercial and Medicare Advantage enrollees. Prescription fills were assessed within a 90-day follow-up from the patient's index AF encounter between January 1, 2016, and December 31, 2020. Among the 339,197 AF patients, 4.4%, 8.0%, and 87.6% were in the low-, moderate-, and high-risk groups (according to CHA2DS2-VASc score). An over (29.6%) and under (52.2%) utilization of OAC was reported in low- and high-risk AF patients. A considerably high frequency for warfarin use was also noted among high-risk group patients taking OAC (33.1%). The results suggest that anticoagulation use for stroke prevention in the United States is still comparable to the pre-DOAC era studies. About half of newly diagnosed high-risk non-valvular AF patients remain unprotected against stroke risk. Several predictors of OAC and DOAC use were also identified. Our findings may identify a population at risk of complications due to under- or over-treatment and highlight the need for future quality improvement efforts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number101212
JournalIJC Heart and Vasculature
StatePublished - Jun 2023


  • Atrial fibrillation
  • Oral anticoagulant
  • Prescription
  • Stroke
  • Warfarin
  • non-vitamin K oral anticoagulant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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