Background: Patient satisfaction with oral anticoagulant (OAC) therapy is an important metric of care quality and has been associated with higher medication persistence. Among OACs, dabigatran has been shown to be non-inferior to vitamin K antagonists (VKAs) with increased ease of use for stroke prevention in patients with atrial fibrillation (AF). In this study, we sought to evaluate the expectations, convenience, and satisfaction of Taiwanese AF patients on dabigatran and VKA therapies as well as associated clinical outcomes. Methods: Patients with AF (paroxysmal, persistent, or permanent) receiving OAC medication from outpatient facilities were enrolled in 24 hospitals across Taiwan. Cohort A consisted of 139 patients switched from VKA to dabigatran, while cohort B was comprised of 1113 patients on newly initiated OAC therapy (VKA, 54). The Perception of Anticoagulant Treatment Questionnaire was distributed, and responses on a five-point Likert scale were aggregated and analyzed across demographic groups. Results: In cohort A, convenience and satisfaction scores continued to increase at follow-up and significantly higher, compared to baseline, but both treatments scored similarly in cohort B. In cohort B, the two highest expectation scores were that the OAC would be “easy to take” and could be “taken independently.” On the other hand, the patients were relatively less concerned about the side effects and cost of therapy before taking the OAC. For dabigatran-receiving patients, there were 1.1 stroke-related events per 100 patient-years and 3.0 bleeding-related events per 100 patient-years. Conclusion: In Taiwanese patients with AF and initially treated with VKA, switched to dabigatran resulted in higher convenience and treatment satisfaction. For those patients on newly initiated OAC treatment, VKA and dabigatran convenience and satisfaction scores were similar.
- Patient expectation
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