|Boston Scientific Initiates Trial Comparing Left Atrial Appendage Closure to Direct Oral Anticoagulants for Stroke Risk Reduction Post-AFib Ablation|
Approximately 33 million patients worldwide have AF, a common heart rhythm disorder.1 In recent years, the number of U.S. patients who have undergone an in-hospital cardiac ablation procedure to prevent abnormal electrical signals from moving through the heart has grown tenfold.2 More than 50% of those patients become asymptomatic, making them less likely to adhere to current guidelines recommending the continuation of OAC post-procedure to reduce the risk of stroke.3,4 Stroke is five times more likely to occur in patients with AF than in someone with a normal heart rhythm.5
"Cardiac ablation is an effective way to treat an abnormal heart rhythm for many patients, though symptomatic relief can lead these patients to stop taking their blood thinners and unknowingly put themselves at an elevated risk for a stroke," said Dr.
The randomized, controlled OPTION trial will enroll 1,600 patients with non-valvular AF who are suitable for OAC therapy and have recently had or will have an ablation. Patients at as many as 130 global sites will be randomized to receive the newest-generation WATCHMAN FLX device or an OAC, inclusive of commonly prescribed DOACs or warfarin. The primary effectiveness endpoint is all cause death, stroke and systemic embolism through 36 months, and the primary safety endpoint is non-procedural bleeding through 36 months.
"Beyond advancing the robust clinical literature supporting the WATCHMAN therapy, findings from the OPTION trial have the potential to expand the number of patients with atrial fibrillation who can receive an alternative to life-long anticoagulants and thus avoid their potential side effects," said Dr. Ian Meredith, AM, executive vice president and global chief medical officer,
The WATCHMAN device has been implanted in more than 80,000 patients worldwide and the latest-generation WATCHMAN FLX device received CE Mark in March 2019.
In the U.S., the WATCHMAN FLX device is an investigational device and not available for sale.
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1 Chugh SS, et al. Worldwide epidemiology of atrial fibrillation: a global burden of disease 2010 study. Circulation 2014;129:837–847. doi: https://doi.org/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.113.005119.
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