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The novel oral anticoagulants, comprised of direct thrombin inhibitors (DTIs) (ie, dabigatran) and the factor Xa inhibitors (ie, rivaroxaban, apixaban and edoxaban), are revolutionising the way patients are anticoagulated. Recent years have witnessed a surge of trials evaluating these drugs in many clinical contexts. However, with such rapid uptake, it becomes critical to carefully evaluate safety data in order to optimise patient selection and minimise risk.
The largest of the contemporary trials with dabigratran, the Randomised Evaluation of Long-term Anticoagulation (RE-LY), randomised 18 113 patients with …