[to top of second column]
In October, the FDA approved the first warfarin rival -- Pradaxa, made by the German firm Boehringer Ingelheim. It costs about $7 a day wholesale compared to less than 50 cents for warfarin. But neither Pradaxa nor rivaroxaban interacts with food as warfarin does, or requires blood tests to adjust the dose. No price has been set for rivaroxaban, which is a daily pill versus twice a day for Pradaxa.
Which of the warfarin alternatives is better?
"That's the inevitable question" that only a new study comparing them in similar patients can answer, said Duke University's Dr. Kenneth Mahaffey, who led the rivaroxaban study.
Duke's Dr. Robert Califf, a study co-leader, said his 84-year-old mother, who has struggled with warfarin, likely would switch to one of the new drugs "because she can afford it."
They and other study leaders have consulted for or received research support from the makers of rivaroxaban and other heart drugs.
Dr. Elliott Antman, a Brigham and Women's Hospital cardiologist who is vice chairman of the heart conference, said patients already are asking about Pradaxa, and that any warfarin alternative will appeal to people "who want a better quality of life, free of the burden of having to have frequent blood tests."
"Warfarin is the gold standard," and rivaroxaban seems an "attractive option," he said.
Heart rhythm problem: http://tinyurl.com/25aj85s
Heart Association: http://www.heart.org/
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
< Recent articles
Back to top
News | Sports | Business | Rural Review | Teaching & Learning | Home and Family | Tourism | Obituaries
Law & Courts |
Spiritual Life |
Health & Fitness |
Calendar | Letters to the Editor