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Research sheds light on stroke risk for older women with AF

Posted by RHHAdmin on May 9, 2012 8:15:21 AM

Those providing senior care to women who have been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation (AF) may want to be on higher alert, as new research suggests that these patients could have a higher risk of stroke than men.

Research published in the JAMA and Archive Journals examined the use of the anticoagulant medication warfarin and how it related to stroke risk. The study's authors suggest that the therapy may not be enough for women over the age of 75, and they may be more susceptible to having a stroke.

AF is the most common form of cardiac arrhythmia, with more than 2.2 million Americans suffering from the condition. The study's authors noted that while they were able to notice a difference between the medication's effectiveness on men and women, more research needs to be done specifically on female patients.

"Our results suggest that elderly women with AF may need to be targeted for more effective stroke prevention therapy," the authors write. "Clinicians should be aware of the elevated stroke risk in older women with AF, and new strategies should be applied to effectively prevent stroke equally in men and women."

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