Publications and Research

Document Type


Publication Date




In the USA, there is a steady rise of atrial fibrillation due to the aging population with increased morbidity. This study evaluated the risk of stroke/systemic embolism (S/SE) and major bleeding (MB) among elderly patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) and multimorbidity prescribed direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs).


Using the CMS Medicare database, a retrospective observational study of adult patients with NVAF and multimorbidity who initiated apixaban, dabigatran, or rivaroxaban from January 1, 2012 to December 31, 2017 was conducted. High multimorbidity was classified as having ≥ 6 comorbidities. Cox proportional hazard models were used to evaluate the hazard ratios of S/SE and MB among three 1:1 propensity score matched DOAC cohorts. All-cause healthcare costs were estimated using generalized linear models.


Overall 36% of the NVAF study population had high multimorbidity, forming three propensity score matched (PSM) cohorts: 12,511 apixaban-dabigatran, 60,287 apixaban-rivaroxaban, and 12,567 dabigatran-rivaroxaban patients. Apixaban was associated with a lower risk of stroke/SE and MB when compared with dabigatran and rivaroxaban. Dabigatran had a lower risk of stroke/SE and a similar risk of MB when compared with rivaroxaban. Compared to rivaroxaban, apixaban patients incurred lower all-cause healthcare costs, and dabigatran patients incurred similar all-cause healthcare costs. Compared to dabigatran, apixaban patients incurred similar all-cause healthcare costs.


Patients with NVAF and ≥ 6 comorbid conditions had significantly different risks for stroke/SE and MB when comparing DOACs to DOACs, and different healthcare expenses. This study's results may be useful for evaluating the risk–benefit ratio of DOAC use in patients with NVAF and multimorbidity.


Dhamane, Amol D., Mauricio Ferri, Allison Keshishian, Cristina Russ, Nipun Atreja, Cynthia Gutierrez, Birol Emir, Huseyin Yuce, and Manuela Di Fusco. "Effectiveness and Safety of Direct Oral Anticoagulants Among Patients with Non-valvular Atrial Fibrillation and Multimorbidity." Advances in Therapy (2022): 1-16. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non- Commercial 4.0 International License.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.