How do I know what anticoagulation medication to choose?
Talk to your healthcare team about which medication is right for you. Usually a direct anticoagulant (DOAC) such as Eliquis (apixaban) or Xarelto (rivaroxaban) is prescribed over warfarin (coumadin) as they are not affected by your diet nor most medications like warfarin. They also do not require periodic blood draw monitoring, but one exception is APAS. Eliquis is typically prescribed if there is a perceived higher bleeding risk i.e., menstruating female or if the patient has renal failure while Xarelto is preferable due to daily dosing instead of twice a day with Eliquis. Endoxaban and Dabigatran (Pradaxa) are other DOACs that do not require monitoring.
Regardless of what anticoagulation medication is chosen, the treatment goals should include:
- Stop an existing clot from growing
- Preventing the formation of a new clot in other vein segments that could break off and travel to the lungs and become a PE
- Avoiding or minimizing any long-term complications