Reversal Agents for the Direct Oral Anticoagulants

Jack E Ansell
Hematology/oncology Clinics of North America 2016, 30 (5): 1085-98
The vitamin K antagonists (VKAs) are associated with a significant rate of major and fatal bleeding complications. The new direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs), even though having a better bleeding profile than the VKAs, are still associated with serious bleeding. The anticoagulation induced by the VKAs can be reversed with both vitamin K and prothrombin complex concentrates, whereas the DOACs were developed without specific reversal agents. Although there is controversy around the necessity of a reversal agent, most clinicians agree that having a reversal agent for the DOACs would be beneficial. Three reversal agents are currently in development.

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