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Idraparinux Not Superior for Venous Thromboembolism

Studies conclude that net benefit of idraparinux is marginal compared to standard therapy

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 12 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with venous thromboembolism, initial and extended treatment with idraparinux yields only marginal benefits compared to standard treatment, according to two reports published in the Sept. 13 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Harry R. Buller, M.D., of the Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and colleagues randomly assigned 2,904 patients with deep vein thrombosis and 2,215 patients with pulmonary embolism to receive either subcutaneous idraparinux or heparin plus a vitamin K antagonist. At three and six months, the investigators found that both regimens were similarly effective in deep vein thromobosis, but that idraparinux was less effective in pulmonary embolism.

In a separate study, the same researchers randomly assigned 1,215 patients with venous thromboembolism who had completed six months of therapy with idraparinux or a vitamin K antagonist and needed extended anticoagulation to receive either six months of treatment with idraparinux or a placebo. They found that idraparinux helped prevent thromboembolism recurrence, but also increased the risk of major hemorrhage.

"We conclude that the net benefit of such treatment is marginal," the authors conclude.

The studies were supported by Sanofi-Aventis.

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