Send to

Choose Destination
Neurology. 2014 Feb 25;82(8):716-24. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000000145.

Summary of evidence-based guideline update: prevention of stroke in nonvalvular atrial fibrillation: report of the Guideline Development Subcommittee of the American Academy of Neurology.

Author information

From the Department of Neurology (A.C.), SUNY Upstate Medical University, Syracuse, NY; the Department of Stroke and Neurocritical Care (S.R.M.), Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Hospital, Philadelphia; the Stroke Program (S.C.), Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI; the Department of Neurology (C.S.K.), Boston University School of Medicine and Boston Medical Center, Boston, MA; and the Department of Neurology (G.G.), University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS.

Erratum in

  • Neurology. 2014 Apr 22;82(16):1481. Dosage error in article text.



To update the 1998 American Academy of Neurology practice parameter on stroke prevention in nonvalvular atrial fibrillation (NVAF). How often do various technologies identify previously undetected NVAF? Which therapies reduce ischemic stroke risk with the least risk of hemorrhage, including intracranial hemorrhage? The complete guideline on which this summary is based is available as an online data supplement to this article.


Systematic literature review; modified Delphi process recommendation formulation.


In patients with recent cryptogenic stroke, cardiac rhythm monitoring probably detects occult NVAF. In patients with NVAF, dabigatran, rivaroxaban, and apixaban are probably at least as effective as warfarin in preventing stroke and have a lower risk of intracranial hemorrhage. Triflusal plus acenocoumarol is likely more effective than acenocoumarol alone in reducing stroke risk. Clopidogrel plus aspirin is probably less effective than warfarin in preventing stroke and has a lower risk of intracranial bleeding. Clopidogrel plus aspirin as compared with aspirin alone probably reduces stroke risk but increases the risk of major hemorrhage. Apixaban is likely more effective than aspirin for decreasing stroke risk and has a bleeding risk similar to that of aspirin.


Clinicians might obtain outpatient cardiac rhythm studies in patients with cryptogenic stroke to identify patients with occult NVAF (Level C) and should routinely offer anticoagulation to patients with NVAF and a history of TIA/stroke (Level B). Specific patient considerations will inform anticoagulant selection in patients with NVAF judged to need anticoagulation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center