Background: We investigated the efficacy of rivaroxaban, an orally active direct factor Xa inhibitor, in preventing venous thrombosis after total knee arthroplasty.
Methods: In this randomized, double-blind trial, 2531 patients who were to undergo total knee arthroplasty received either oral rivaroxaban, 10 mg once daily, beginning 6 to 8 hours after surgery, or subcutaneous enoxaparin, 40 mg once daily, beginning 12 hours before surgery. The primary efficacy outcome was the composite of any deep-vein thrombosis, nonfatal pulmonary embolism, or death from any cause within 13 to 17 days after surgery. Secondary efficacy outcomes included major venous thromboembolism (i.e., proximal deep-vein thrombosis, nonfatal pulmonary embolism, or death related to venous thromboembolism) and symptomatic venous thromboembolism. The primary safety outcome was major bleeding.
Results: The primary efficacy outcome occurred in 79 of 824 patients (9.6%) who received rivaroxaban and in 166 of 878 (18.9%) who received enoxaparin (absolute risk reduction, 9.2%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 5.9 to 12.4; P<0.001). Major venous thromboembolism occurred in 9 of 908 patients (1.0%) given rivaroxaban and 24 of 925 (2.6%) given enoxaparin (absolute risk reduction, 1.6%; 95% CI, 0.4 to 2.8; P=0.01). Symptomatic events occurred less frequently with rivaroxaban than with enoxaparin (P=0.005). Major bleeding occurred in 0.6% of patients in the rivaroxaban group and 0.5% of patients in the enoxaparin group. The incidence of drug-related adverse events, mainly gastrointestinal, was 12.0% in the rivaroxaban group and 13.0% in the enoxaparin group.
Conclusions: Rivaroxaban was superior to enoxaparin for thromboprophylaxis after total knee arthroplasty, with similar rates of bleeding. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00361894.)
2008 Massachusetts Medical Society