Dual-pathway inhibition for secondary and tertiary antithrombotic prevention in cardiovascular disease
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Advances in antiplatelet therapies for patients with cardiovascular disease have improved patient outcomes over time, but the challenge of balancing the risks of ischaemia and bleeding remains substantial. Moreover, many patients with cardiovascular disease have a residual risk of ischaemic events despite receiving antiplatelet therapy. Therefore, novel strategies are needed to prevent clinical events through mechanisms beyond platelet inhibition and with an acceptable associated risk of bleeding. The advent of non-vitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants, which attenuate fibrin formation by selective inhibition of factor Xa or thrombin, has renewed the interest in dual-pathway inhibition strategies that combine an antiplatelet agent with an anticoagulant drug. In this Review, we highlight the emerging pharmacological rationale and clinical development of dual-pathway inhibition strategies for the prevention of atherothrombotic events in patients with different manifestations of cardiovascular disease, such as coronary artery disease, cerebrovascular disease and peripheral artery disease.
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