Benefits and Harms of Oral Anticoagulant Therapy in Chronic Kidney Disease
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Background: Effects of oral anticoagulation in chronic kidney disease (CKD) are uncertain. Purpose: To evaluate the benefits and harms of vitamin K antagonists (VKAs) and non-vitamin K oral anticoagulants (NOACs) in adults with CKD stages 3 to 5, including those with dialysis-dependent end-stage kidney disease (ESKD). Data Sources: English-language searches of MEDLINE, EMBASE, and Cochrane databases (inception to February 2019); review bibliographies; and ClinicalTrials.gov (25 February 2019). Study Selection: Randomized controlled trials evaluating VKAs or NOACs for any indication in patients with CKD that reported efficacy or bleeding outcomes. Data Extraction: Two authors independently extracted data, assessed risk of bias, and rated certainty of evidence. Data Synthesis: Forty-five trials involving 34 082 participants who received anticoagulation for atrial fibrillation (AF) (11 trials), venous thromboembolism (VTE) (11 trials), thromboprophylaxis (6 trials), prevention of dialysis access thrombosis (8 trials), and cardiovascular disease other than AF (9 trials) were included. All but the 8 trials involving patients with ESKD excluded participants with creatinine clearance less than 20 mL/min or estimated glomerular filtration rate less than 15 mL/min/1.73 m2. In AF, compared with VKAs, NOACs reduced risks for stroke or systemic embolism (risk ratio [RR], 0.79 [95% CI, 0.66 to 0.93]; high-certainty evidence) and hemorrhagic stroke (RR, 0.48 [CI, 0.30 to 0.76]; moderate-certainty evidence). Compared with VKAs, the effects of NOACs on recurrent VTE or VTE-related death were uncertain (RR, 0.72 [CI, 0.44 to 1.17]; low-certainty evidence). In all trials combined, NOACs seemingly reduced major bleeding risk compared with VKAs (RR, 0.75 [CI, 0.56 to 1.01]; low-certainty evidence). Limitation: Scant evidence for advanced CKD or ESKD; data mostly from subgroups of large trials. Conclusion: In early-stage CKD, NOACs had a benefit-risk profile superior to that of VKAs. For advanced CKD or ESKD, there was insufficient evidence to establish benefits or harms of VKAs or NOACs. Primary Funding Source: None. (PROSPERO: CRD42017079709).
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