Background: Anticoagulation in cardioversion and ablation of atrial fibrillation is imperative for reducing thrombo-embolic events. Ample information is available about the use of warfarin and vitamin K antagonists (VKA) but few trials examine safety and efficacy of rivaroxaban in these procedures. We aim to explore the hypothesis that rivaroxaban causes equal thrombo-embolic and bleeding events when used in atrial fibrillation patients undergoing ablation or cardioversion compared to VKA. Methods: We searched the online databases as well as conference abstracts till December 2014 for studies comparing rivaroxaban with VKA in atrial fibrillation patients undergoing catheter ablation or cardioversion. We report events as Odds ratio using random effects model except when event rates were less than 1% we used Peto Odds Ratio. Results: A total of 8872 atrial fibrillation patients in 15 studies undergoing either catheter ablation or cardioversion were included in this analysis. There were significantly lower stroke events with rivaroxaban compared with VKA (Peto Odds Ratio (POR) 0.33, 95% confidence interval (CI) [0.11, 0.95]; P = 0.04), and significantly less thromboembolic events with rivaroxaban compared with VKA (POR 0.46, 95% CI [0.21, 0.97]; P = 0.04). Major and minor bleeding were equal with rivaroxaban versus VKA (Odds Ratio (OR) 0.92, 95% CI [0.62, 1.36]; P = 0.68) and (OR 0.81,95% CI [0.58, 1.11]; P = 0.19) respectively. Conclusion: The use of rivaroxaban in ablation and cardioversion of atrial fibrillation may be associated with decreased risk of stroke and thromboembolism with equal bleeding risk compared to VKA.
- Atrial fibrillation
- Oral anticoagulants
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine