Evaluating the efficacy and safety of apixaban, a new oral anticoagulant, using Bayesian meta-analysis
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- Villa, L.A., Malone, D.C. & Ross, D. Int J Hematol (2013) 98: 390. doi:10.1007/s12185-013-1445-2
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Apixaban is a direct inhibitor of factor Xa, and is a potential alternative for the treatment of acute venous thromboembolism. This study sought to evaluate the efficacy and safety of apixaban versus enoxaparin. A systematic search of the literature for randomized controlled trials of apixaban thromboprophylaxis versus enoxaparin was conducted using three databases: PubMed, EMBASE, and the Cochrane library. Five studies that included a total of 12,938 patients were analyzed using Bayesian random-effects meta-analysis. To evaluate efficacy, a composite of venous thromboembolism and death during follow-up was measured. To evaluate safety, major and total bleeding events were considered. The odds ratio (OR) for the composite outcome of efficacy was 0.66 (95 % CI 0.33–1.29) for apixaban compared to enoxaparin, while there was a similar risk of major bleeding (OR 1.03, 95 % CI 0.36–3.73) and total bleeding (OR 0.92, 95 % CI 0.64–1.20). These results suggest a lack of clear superiority of apixaban relative to enoxaparin. Apixaban is an oral alternative with similar efficacy and safety to existing anticoagulant therapies.