In order to bring you the best possible user experience, this site uses Javascript. If you are seeing this message, it is likely that the Javascript option in your browser is disabled. For optimal viewing of this site, please ensure that Javascript is enabled for your browser.
Did you know that your browser is out of date? To get the best experience using our website we recommend that you upgrade to a newer version. Learn more.

Safe and effective stroke prevention in atrial fibrillation: The 2018 EHRA Practical Guide on NOACs

ESC Congress News 2018 - Munich, Germany

According to 2016 ESC Guidelines on atrial fibrillation (AF), non-vitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants (NOACs) should be used in preference to vitamin K antagonists for the prevention of stroke in patients with AF, except in those with a mechanical heart valve or mitral valve stenosis.1

Stroke Prevention
Atrial Fibrillation

stefel-jan-2018-congress-news.jpg“Use of NOACs is growing,” says Doctor Jan Steffel (University Heart Center Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland), first author on the European Heart Rhythm Association (EHRA) Practical Guide on the use of NOACs. “The EHRA guide gives doctors easy-to-follow, practical advice on using these agents in a variety of specific clinical situations. The third edition2 was launched at EHRA’s annual congress in March this year and the impressive number of delegates the session attracted highlights the demand for this type of document.”

The 2018 edition of the guide features several new chapters covering the use of NOACs in particular patient groups, such as those with extremes of weight, athletes, frail individuals and those with cognitive impairment, and the correct dosing of NOACs in conditions other than AF, for example, ischaemic heart disease. Doctors can also find the latest advice on the combination of NOACs with antiplatelet drugs in patients with coronary artery disease, the administration of anticoagulants around cardioversion and the use of the recently approved, first NOAC reversal agent, idarucizumab. Finally, Dr. Steffel draws attention to the expansion of the chapter on drug–drug interactions to cover anticancer and antiepileptic drugs, which he calls ”a first of its kind.”

“The 2018 EHRA Practical Guide is an essential companion for all doctors using NOACs in patients with AF.”

At ESC Congress 2018, delegates can access the 2018 EHRA Practical Guide in an abridged format - via the EHRA Key Messages Mobile app. Those wanting a more traditional format can buy a copy of the Key Message from the ESC Shop at the ESC Plaza. EHRA Members get a discounted price.

  1. Kirchhof P, et al. Eur Heart J 2016;37:2893–2962.
  2. Steffel J, et al. Eur Heart J 2018;39:1330–1393.


Click here to read other scientific highlights in the ESC Congress news.

Notes to editor

About the European Society of Cardiology

The European Society of Cardiology brings together healthcare professionals from more than 150 countries, working to advance cardiovascular medicine and help people lead longer, healthier lives.

About ESC Congress 2018

ESC Congress is the world’s largest and most influential cardiovascular event contributing to global awareness of the latest clinical trials and breakthrough discoveries. ESC Congress 2018 takes place 25 to 29 August at the Messe München in Munich, Germany. Explore the scientific programme