Anticoagulation: stroke prevention in patients with atrial fibrillation

Cardiol Clin. 2009 Feb;27(1):125-35, ix. doi: 10.1016/j.ccl.2008.09.002.


It is well recognized that during atrial fibrillation (AF), clots may form in the left atrium, which may embolize and cause ischemic stroke or systemic embolism. The presence of AF confers a fivefold increased risk for stroke. AF is the most common and important cause of stroke. This article considers the risks for and anticoagulation prophylaxis against embolic stroke in patients who have AF.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Anti-Arrhythmia Agents / therapeutic use
  • Anticoagulants / administration & dosage
  • Anticoagulants / therapeutic use*
  • Atrial Fibrillation / complications*
  • Atrial Fibrillation / therapy
  • Electric Countershock
  • Europe
  • Humans
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Prognosis
  • Stroke / etiology
  • Stroke / prevention & control*
  • United States


  • Anti-Arrhythmia Agents
  • Anticoagulants