To stay on Eliquis or not

Posted by sandw40 @sandw40, Mar 11 5:47pm

I was diagnosed with afib on 05/03/2018 while on a 30 monitor because I asked my PCP about the irregular heart beats that were showing up on my pb monitor. I had 2 min 30 sec event that I never felt. I was told that I need to start taking Eliquis which I did 2 5mg daily.
I have tried to find out all the information on my condition that I can. I am 75 year old male with hypertension.

I bought myself a fitbit sense that monitors my heart rate and the ability to take a ekg. I also entered the Fitbit heart survey which lasted from 5/7/2020 to 11/12/2020. During this period no events where recorded in my every day monitoring, no events.

My question is, is Eliquis doing anything for me? My understanding is that clots would only develope because of an afib event. No AFib events, no clots.

Is my thinking correct in that I should be able to stop the Eliquis until I start having events again. When talking about this with the PCP this morning I was left with the statement that it's up to me.

I'm just trying to make some sort of informed descion.
Thank you for any info.
Wayne G

My doctor took me off Eliquis about 30 days after my ablation. I had a random attack about 12 months later, and he put me back on Eliquis for 60 days.

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@schaffneka01

My doctor took me off Eliquis about 30 days after my ablation. I had a random attack about 12 months later, and he put me back on Eliquis for 60 days.

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In general the cardiologist’s decision regarding the maintaining of Eliquis is a conservative option and taking the history of the patient into consideration.
Risk reward. Often there is no looking back after a stroke for a second chance.
Please don’t assign side effect to this drug out of convenience.

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@schaffneka01

My doctor took me off Eliquis about 30 days after my ablation. I had a random attack about 12 months later, and he put me back on Eliquis for 60 days.

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My question to you if you wish to share is what transpired during that 60 day period and if you re currently back on Eliquis. I assume that the decision to go off Eliquis was made between you and the cardiologist.

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@schaffneka01

My doctor took me off Eliquis about 30 days after my ablation. I had a random attack about 12 months later, and he put me back on Eliquis for 60 days.

Jump to this post

I was diagnosed with AFIB about 4 years ago. I then tried a couple of anti-arrhythmic medications which I could not tolerate, so my cardio sent me for an eval to an EP. The three of us decided an ablation was a viable alternative and 2 years ago this month, I had the ablation. I was put on Xarelto. About a year later, I began having an increase in PVC's and was put on a ZIO patch which caught a fairly long episode of AFIB…..which I did NOT feel. (This scared me as before the ablation, my AFIB was always noticeable) The fact that I did NOT feel the AFIB totally convinced me that I was going to stay on Xarelto for the rest of my life if that's what it took to protect me from having a stroke!
AFIB is NOT curable and for those of us who have undergone ablation understand that we may need more than ONE ablation to control the AFIB. Going off the blood thinner is a risk I am not willing to take. As "spudmato" VERY wisely said "THERE IS NO LOOKING BACK AFTER A STROKE FOR A SECOND CHANCE."

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@rubywitch67

I was diagnosed with AFIB about 4 years ago. I then tried a couple of anti-arrhythmic medications which I could not tolerate, so my cardio sent me for an eval to an EP. The three of us decided an ablation was a viable alternative and 2 years ago this month, I had the ablation. I was put on Xarelto. About a year later, I began having an increase in PVC's and was put on a ZIO patch which caught a fairly long episode of AFIB…..which I did NOT feel. (This scared me as before the ablation, my AFIB was always noticeable) The fact that I did NOT feel the AFIB totally convinced me that I was going to stay on Xarelto for the rest of my life if that's what it took to protect me from having a stroke!
AFIB is NOT curable and for those of us who have undergone ablation understand that we may need more than ONE ablation to control the AFIB. Going off the blood thinner is a risk I am not willing to take. As "spudmato" VERY wisely said "THERE IS NO LOOKING BACK AFTER A STROKE FOR A SECOND CHANCE."

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Totally understand your descion to stay on the DOAC. You were able to discover by what ever means you used to validate actually afib episodes.
The concern I have is the method I use for monitoring is the Fitbit which in theory and advertising at least claims to monitor heart rate.

Short of having a never ending recording device inserted under my skin I and most other people have no way of knowing that they are having episodes of afib if they feel no sensation.

I gladly accept taking Eliquis the rest of my life if I can see the reason. But if I accepted the concept of better safe than sorry than PCP and cardiologist should and probably would start writing out scripts for DOAC to everyone over 70 – 75 but definitely feel that's not good or necessary.
Thank you for your input.

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Interesting.
Heart rate is not similar in any manner to sinus rhythm/electrocardiogram. It is important, certainly, but not the same.
Safe that sorry is a diversion from the point/reason for the prescribing and or taking the medication; it is a preventative needed due to history of the patient.
What has age got to do with it? The result of AFIB is clear, and the danger is as well. Many people with AFIB find it to be silent, and go in and out from time to time. (I started with AFIB in 2017 discover in a pre op exam.
Originally I was on Plavix due to a TIA, but was switched to Eliquis when I developed AFIB. More bruising, but no clots or stokes; think of the hidden advantage, you get the drug ahead of time to break up clots, hmmm. Don't out think you doctor.
If your doctor says take it, take it or change doctors.
Good luck, and make wise decisions, I think you will.

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@spudmato

In general the cardiologist’s decision regarding the maintaining of Eliquis is a conservative option and taking the history of the patient into consideration.
Risk reward. Often there is no looking back after a stroke for a second chance.
Please don’t assign side effect to this drug out of convenience.

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Not sure why you referenced side effects in responding to my comment. I made no mention.

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@sandw40

My question to you if you wish to share is what transpired during that 60 day period and if you re currently back on Eliquis. I assume that the decision to go off Eliquis was made between you and the cardiologist.

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I had no episodes during the 60-day period, and none since then (October 2019).

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@spudmato

Interesting.
Heart rate is not similar in any manner to sinus rhythm/electrocardiogram. It is important, certainly, but not the same.
Safe that sorry is a diversion from the point/reason for the prescribing and or taking the medication; it is a preventative needed due to history of the patient.
What has age got to do with it? The result of AFIB is clear, and the danger is as well. Many people with AFIB find it to be silent, and go in and out from time to time. (I started with AFIB in 2017 discover in a pre op exam.
Originally I was on Plavix due to a TIA, but was switched to Eliquis when I developed AFIB. More bruising, but no clots or stokes; think of the hidden advantage, you get the drug ahead of time to break up clots, hmmm. Don't out think you doctor.
If your doctor says take it, take it or change doctors.
Good luck, and make wise decisions, I think you will.

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Understand difference between rate and rhythm, when taking self administered ekg show "normal sinus rhythm". As I keep mentioning my only concern is that if you can not verify how, what why or when you are or are not having afib episodes how can you correctly administer the drug? My wife who is remission from non hodgkins lymphoma is not on some sort of maintenance level of chemo just in case there is a flair up. they actively monitor every 6 months with blood work and physical exam.

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@schaffneka01

I had no episodes during the 60-day period, and none since then (October 2019).

Jump to this post

Thank you for the reply.

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@spudmato

Interesting.
Heart rate is not similar in any manner to sinus rhythm/electrocardiogram. It is important, certainly, but not the same.
Safe that sorry is a diversion from the point/reason for the prescribing and or taking the medication; it is a preventative needed due to history of the patient.
What has age got to do with it? The result of AFIB is clear, and the danger is as well. Many people with AFIB find it to be silent, and go in and out from time to time. (I started with AFIB in 2017 discover in a pre op exam.
Originally I was on Plavix due to a TIA, but was switched to Eliquis when I developed AFIB. More bruising, but no clots or stokes; think of the hidden advantage, you get the drug ahead of time to break up clots, hmmm. Don't out think you doctor.
If your doctor says take it, take it or change doctors.
Good luck, and make wise decisions, I think you will.

Jump to this post

@spudmato. After my TIA last January, my cardiologist and my children convinced me to have a loop recorder implant to make sure I don't have afib, as many people have afib and not really feel it. So far so good. No afib noted. I was also put on Xeralto. Apart from some bleeding from my gum, which I have problem with before the Xeralto, I have not noticed any serious bruising. I've read that blood clotting is found in many covid patients so that's another reason I'm still on it.
I don't like taking meds, but don't want another TIA either. The next time I may not be so lucky as I did not suffer any damage from the last one. I just wish there's a generic soon. I can hardly afford it, yet I don't qualify for any kind of assistance either from xeralto or Medicare.

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@mayofeb2020

@spudmato. After my TIA last January, my cardiologist and my children convinced me to have a loop recorder implant to make sure I don't have afib, as many people have afib and not really feel it. So far so good. No afib noted. I was also put on Xeralto. Apart from some bleeding from my gum, which I have problem with before the Xeralto, I have not noticed any serious bruising. I've read that blood clotting is found in many covid patients so that's another reason I'm still on it.
I don't like taking meds, but don't want another TIA either. The next time I may not be so lucky as I did not suffer any damage from the last one. I just wish there's a generic soon. I can hardly afford it, yet I don't qualify for any kind of assistance either from xeralto or Medicare.

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Congratulations on your outcome so far. Some what good news as far as a generic for Eliquis as the FDA has announced the approval of one but it doesn't mean that it will become available commercially anytime soon. Yep in the same boat as you with the cost. Hate it when watching commercials for it and they say "May cost you only $5.00 per prescription".

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