Motoki Fukutomi, MD, PhD; Ole De Backer, MD, PhD; Lars Søndergaard*, MD, DMSc
The Heart Center, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark
Atrial fibrillation (AF) is the most common cardiac arrhythmia encountered in clinical practice and an independent risk factor for ischaemic stroke. It is estimated that AF is present in approximately 1-2% of the total population, although this number may be as high as 5-10% in those aged more than 70years. In addition, it is foreseen that the prevalence of AF will triple in the western world in the next four decades. As aconsequence, stroke prevention in AF patients is amajor public health priority.
Traditionally, vitamin K antagonists (e.g., warfarin) have been used as oral anticoagulant (OAC) therapy ...