I am sad to learn of the death of Elizabeth Edwards, who died earlier today of metastatic breast cancer at the age of 61. She has taught countless people about what it’s like to live with cancer.
My thoughts are with her family now.
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On the hematology front –
Last weekend at the annual meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH), researchers presented data on a new kind of blood thinner. Rivaroxaban (Xarelto) is a pill that works by blocking the activated form of human clotting factor X (Xa). The NEJM published the EINSTEIN* findings on-line ahead of print, coincident with the presentation.
The research includes two reported trials. In the first, an open-label randomized study of 3449 patients with acute deep venous thrombosis (DVT), subjects received either rivaroxaban pills or a standard treatment regimen starting with an injected blood thinner (enoxaparin) followed by an oral Vitamin K antagonist, like coumadin. The main findings in this Acute DVT Study was that the new drug, rivaroxaban, is as good (“non-inferior”) in terms of preventing recurrent clot as is the older regimen and bears a similar safety profile.
The second, parallel EINSTEIN-extension trial involved randomization
See more Notes On a New Kind of Anticoagulant