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Safety and effectiveness of rivaroxaban versus warfarin across GFR levels in atrial fibrillation: a population-based study in Australia and Canada


Rationale & Objective — The benefit–risk profile of rivaroxaban versus warfarin for atrial fibrillation (AF) in patients with chronic kidney disease is uncertain. We compared rivaroxaban with warfarin across the range of kidney function in adults with AF.

Study Design — Multicenter retrospective cohort.

Setting & Participants — Adults with AF and a measure of estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR); using administrative data from 5 jurisdictions across Australia and Canada (2011-2018). Kidney function was categorized as eGFR ≥60, 45-59, 30-44, and <30 mL/min/1.73 m2. Patients receiving dialysis and kidney transplant recipients were excluded.

Exposures — New dispensation of either rivaroxaban or warfarin.

Outcomes — Composite (1) effectiveness outcome (all-cause death, ischemic stroke, or transient ischemic attack) and (2) major bleeding events (intracranial, gastrointestinal, or other) at 1 year.

Analytical Approach — Cox proportional hazards models accounting for propensity score matching were performed independently in each jurisdiction and then pooled using random-effects meta-analysis.

Results — 55,568 patients (27,784 rivaroxaban–warfarin user matched pairs; mean age 74 years, 46% female, 33.5% with eGFR <60 mL/min/1.73 m2) experienced a total of 4,733 (8.5%) effectiveness and 1,144 (2.0%) bleeding events. Compared to warfarin, rivaroxaban was associated with greater or similar effectiveness across a broad range of kidney function (pooled HRs of 0.72 [95% CI, 0.66-0.78], 0.78 [95% CI, 0.58-1.06], 0.70 [95% CI, 0.57-0.87], and 0.78 [95% CI, 0.62-0.99]) for eGFR ≥60, 45-59, 30-44, and <30 mL/min/1.73 m2, respectively). Rivaroxaban was also associated with similar risk of major bleeding across all eGFR categories (pooled HRs of 0.75 [95% CI, 0.56-1.00], 1.01 [95% CI, 0.79-1.30], 0.87 [95% CI, 0.66-1.15], and 0.63 [95% CI, 0.37-1.09], respectively).

Limitations — Unmeasured treatment selection bias and residual confounding.

Conclusions — In adults with AF, rivaroxaban compared with warfarin was associated with lower or similar risk of all-cause death, ischemic stroke and transient ischemic attack and similar risk of bleeding across a broad range of kidney function.



Ha JT, Scaria A, Andrade J, Badve SV, Birks P, Bota SE, Campain A, Djurdjev O, Garg AX, Harel Z, Hemmelgarn B, Hockham C, James MT, Jardine MJ, Lam D, Levin A, McArthur E, Ravani P, Shao S, Sood MM, Tan Z, Tangri N, Whitlock R, Gallagher M, Jun M. Kidney Med. 2023; 5(7):100675. Epub 2023 May 16.

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