Warfarin or aspirin in embolism prevention in patients with mitral valvulopathy and atrial fibrillation.


BACKGROUND Atrial fibrillation (AF) associated to rheumatic mitral valve disease (RMVD) increases the incidence of thromboembolism (TE), with warfarin being the standard therapy, in spite of difficulties in treatment adherence and therapeutic control. OBJECTIVE To compare the effectiveness of Aspirin vs Warfarin in TE prevention in patients with AF and RMVD. METHODS A total of 229 patients (pts) with AF and RMVD were followed in a prospective and randomized study. The first group consisted of 110 pts receiving Aspirin - 200 mg/day (Group Aspirin - GA) and the second group consisted of 119 pts receiving Warfarin at individually-adjusted doses (Group Warfarin - GW). RESULTS There were 15 embolic events in GA and 24 in GW (p = 0.187), of which 21 presented INR < 2.0. Thus, after excluding patients with inadequate INR, there was a higher number of embolic events in GA than in GW (15 vs 3) (p < 0.0061). The GW showed lower treatment adherence (p = 0.001). Neither group presented episodes of major bleeding. Small bleeding episodes were more frequent in the GW (p < 0.01). Increased serum levels of cholesterol and triglycerides constituted a risk factor for a higher number of thromboembolic events in the studied population, with no difference between the groups. CONCLUSION In patients presenting RMVD with AF for less than a year and no previous embolism, Aspirin is little effective in preventing TE. Patients with lower-risk mitral valvulopathy (mitral regurgitation and mitral biological prosthesis), especially in cases presenting contraindication to or low adherence to Warfarin, Aspirin use can present some benefit in TE prevention.

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@article{Lavtola2010WarfarinOA, title={Warfarin or aspirin in embolism prevention in patients with mitral valvulopathy and atrial fibrillation.}, author={Paulo de Lara Lav{\'i}tola and Roney Orismar Sampaio and Walter Amorim de Oliveira and Berta Paula Napchan Boer and Fl{\'a}vio Tarasoutchi and Guilherme Sobreira Spina and Max Grinberg}, journal={Arquivos brasileiros de cardiologia}, year={2010}, volume={95 6}, pages={749-55} }