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Cancers 2018, 10(8), 271; https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers10080271

The Role of Direct Oral Anticoagulants in Treatment of Cancer-Associated Thrombosis

1
Division of Hematology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114, USA
2
Division of Hematology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA 02215, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 July 2018 / Revised: 7 August 2018 / Accepted: 13 August 2018 / Published: 15 August 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Thrombosis and Haemostasis in Cancer)
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Abstract

Venous thromboembolism (VTE) complicates the clinical course of approximately 5–10% of all cancer patients. Anticoagulation of the cancer patient often presents unique challenges as these patients have both a higher risk of recurrent VTE and a higher risk of bleeding than patients without cancer. Although low molecular weight heparins (LMWH) are the standard of care for the management of cancer-associated VTE, their use requires once or twice daily subcutaneous injections, which can be a significant burden for many cancer patients who often require a long duration of anticoagulation. The direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) are attractive options for patients with malignancy. DOACs offer immediate onset of action and short half-lives, properties similar to LMWH, but the oral route of administration is a significant advantage. Given the higher risks of recurrent VTE and bleeding, there has been concern about the efficacy and safety of DOACs in this patient population. Data are now emerging for the use of DOACs in the cancer patient population from dedicated clinical trials. While recently published data suggest that DOACs hold promise for the treatment of cancer associated VTE, additional studies are needed to establish DOACs as the standard-of-care treatment. Many such studies are currently underway. The available data for the use of DOACs in the treatment of cancer-associated VTE will be reviewed, focusing on efficacy, safety, and other considerations relevant to the cancer patient. View Full-Text
Keywords: direct oral anticoagulant; cancer-associated thrombosis; VTE; venous thromboembolism; malignancy; low molecular weight heparin; dalteparin; edoxaban; rivaroxaban direct oral anticoagulant; cancer-associated thrombosis; VTE; venous thromboembolism; malignancy; low molecular weight heparin; dalteparin; edoxaban; rivaroxaban
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Al-Samkari, H.; Connors, J.M. The Role of Direct Oral Anticoagulants in Treatment of Cancer-Associated Thrombosis. Cancers 2018, 10, 271.

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