Assessment of Predicted Rate and Associated Factors of Dabigatran-induced Bleeding Events in Malaysian Patients with Non-Valvular Atrial Fibrillation

Semira Abdi Beshir1, Lok Bin Yap2, Szyuin Sim1, Kok Han Chee3, Yoke Lin Lo4

1Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
2National Heart Institute, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
3Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
4Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. School of Pharmacy, International Medical University, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.


Purpose: To assess the predicted rate and the factors associated with bleeding events among patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF) receiving dabigatran therapy. Methods: This retrospective cohort study includes adult patients of two tertiary hospitals in Malaysia. Potential study subjects were identified using pharmacy supply database or novel oral anticoagulant (NOAC) registry. Demographics, clinical data and laboratory test results were extracted from the medical records of the patients or electronic databases. The main outcome measure is the occurrence of a bleeding event. Bleeding events were classified into major bleeding, clinically relevant non-major bleeding, or minor bleeding, according to the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis criteria. We consider clinically relevant non-major bleeding events or major bleeding events as clinically relevant bleeding events. An occurrence of any bleeding event was recorded from the initiation of NOAC therapy until the death of a patient, or the date of permanent discontinuation of NOAC use, or the last day of data collection. The predicted rate of dabigatran-induced bleeding events per 100 patient-years was estimated. Results: During a median follow-up period of 18 months, 73 patients experienced 90 bleeding events. Among these patients, 25 including 4 fatal cases, experienced major bleeding events. The predicted rate per 100 patient-years of follow-up of any bleeding events was 9.0 [95% CI 6.9 to 11.1]; clinically relevant bleeding events 6.0 [95% CI 4.8 to 8.3], and major bleeding events 3.0 [95% CI 1.9 to 4.2]. The independent risk factor for clinically relevant bleeding events is prior bleeding. While prior bleeding or congestive heart failure is linked with major bleeding events. Conclusions: The predicted rate for dabigatran-induced major bleeding episodes is low but these adverse events carry a high fatality risk. Preventive measures should target older patients who have prior bleeding or congestive heart failure.


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J Pharm Pharm Sci, 20 (1): 365-377, 2017

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