How do people with and without dementia use anticoagulants? Systematic literature review and analyses of PBS data
Alzheimer's Australia Dementia Research Foundation
Oral anticoagulants are medicines used to prevent stroke, heart attack and other blood clots. People with dementia are less likely to be prescribed anticoagulants than people without dementia, although they are equally likely to experience stroke. The most commonly prescribed anticoagulant is warfarin. Warfarin may cause serious adverse effects including bleeding in gastrointestinal tract or brain. Newer direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) offer potential advantages to people with dementia as they dont require a regular blood test, have fewer interactions and have more convenient dosing. However, the safety of DOACs has not been established for people with dementia. People with dementia were excluded from participating in clinical trials of DOACs. This research will investigate how anticoagulants are being prescribed to Australians with dementia. This will help to target interventions to minimise the risks associated with anticoagulant use. This research will assist clinicians to better care for people with dementia.