Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California

UC Irvine

UC Irvine Previously Published Works bannerUC Irvine

Clinical Outcomes of Warfarin Initiation in Advanced Chronic Kidney Disease Patients With Incident Atrial Fibrillation.



The aim of this study was to examine the efficacy and safety of warfarin initiation following the diagnosis of atrial fibrillation (AF) in patients with late-stage chronic kidney disease (CKD) who transitioned to dialysis.


The clinical benefit of warfarin therapy for thromboprophylaxis after incident AF diagnosis in patients with late-stage CKD who are transitioning to dialysis is unknown.


In this retrospective cohort analysis, the study population was a national cohort of 22,771 U.S. veterans with incident end-stage renal disease who developed incident AF before initiating renal replacement therapy. This study examined the association of warfarin therapy following the diagnosis of incident AF with ischemic cerebrovascular accidents (CVAs) (ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack), ischemic CVA-related hospitalization, major bleeding events (gastrointestinal or intracranial bleeding), bleeding event-related hospitalizations, and post-dialysis, all-cause mortality in multivariable adjusted Cox regression analyses that adjusted for demographic characteristics and comorbidities.


The mean ± SD age of the cohort was 73.5 ± 8.8 years, 13% were African American, and the mean CHA2DS2-VASc score was 5.7 ± 2.1. Of the overall cohort, 6,682 (29.3%) patients were started on warfarin during the follow-up period. The hazard ratios (95% confidence intervals) for ischemic CVA, bleeding events, and death for those started on warfarin were 1.23 (1.16 to 1.30), 1.36 (1.29 to 1.44), and 0.94 (0.90 to 0.97), respectively, compared with those who received no anticoagulation. Warfarin exposure was associated with higher risk for ischemic CVA and bleeding event-related hospitalizations.


In patients with late-stage CKD who transitioned to dialysis, warfarin use was associated with higher risk of ischemic and bleeding events but a lower risk of mortality. Future studies such as those comparing warfarin with newer oral anticoagulant agents are needed to granularly define the net clinical benefit of anticoagulation therapy in patients with advanced CKD with incident AF.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View