Anna Remková, Milan Remko
Although the available heparins and vitamin K antagonists are highly effective for the prevention and/or treatment of most thrombotic diseases, some their disadvantages led researchers and clinicians to search for alternative agents. Selective inhibitors of specific coagulation factors represent a new class of antithrombotic agents, designed to overcome the limitations of traditional anticoagulants. Available clinical trials indicate that the most promising novel anticoagulants are those selectively targeting factor Xa and thrombin. They are being studied for the prevention and treatment of venous thromboembolism, the prevention of stroke in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation and the treatment of acute coronary syndromes. New orally administered anticoagulants (rivaroxaban, dabigatran, and apixaban), which are approved for clinical practice or are in the late stages of investigation, have the potential to be more effective and easier to use than conventional drugs. They greatly expand our armamentarium for the prevention and treatment of arterial and venous thromboembolism.