BACKGROUND: Guidelines recommend that patients with atrial fibrillation (AF) are involved in oral anticoagulant (OAC) treatment decisions. Understanding which OAC attributes AF patients value most could help optimize treatment.
OBJECTIVES: To assess the relationship between patient's stroke knowledge and their preferences for specific OAC attributes.
METHODS: A cross sectional online survey was conducted in patients with nonvalvular AF taking an OAC for stroke prevention in the United States, Canada, Germany, France, and Japan. Patients were asked about their stroke knowledge, perception of the seriousness of AF and concern about stroke, and to rank 7 OAC attributes in order of importance. A conjoint analysis was performed to determine the inherent value of 4 attributes.
RESULTS: In total, 937 patients (mean age [standard deviation] 54.3 [16.6] years; 37.1% female) participated. Of these, 19.5%, 27.9%, and 29.8% had good, moderate, and low stroke knowledge, respectively; 22.8% had no stroke knowledge. Overall, 39.4% of patients (47.5% with good stroke knowledge) perceived AF as very/extremely serious. The OAC attribute ranked as most important was stroke prevention followed by major bleeding risk, other side effects, dosing frequency, antidote availability, dietary restrictions, and use with/without food. In the conjoint analysis, stroke risk reduction was the most valued property, followed by reduction in major bleeding risk, less frequent administration, and administration with/without food. Preferences did not differ with level of stroke knowledge, perception of seriousness of AF, concern of stroke, or medication burden.
CONCLUSIONS: Most AF patients consider efficacy and safety to be the most important OAC attributes, whereas dosing frequency was deemed as less important.