New registry data highlight substantial global differences in stroke prevention for patients with an irregular heartbeat


Boehringer Ingelheim has announced first worldwide data from the GLORIA-AF registry programme highlighting substantial regional differences in how patients with an irregular heartbeat were treated with stroke prevention medicines. Data collected from nine countries over one and a half years (May 2011-January 2013) before the approval of novel oral anticoagulants show that a large proportion of patients with atrial fibrillation at risk of stroke were treated with antiplatelet therapy, such as ASA, or did not receive any stroke prevention treatment at all. These patients were at increased risk of suffering a disabling or fatal stroke. The data were presented at the World Heart Federation’s World Congress of Cardiology Scientific Sessions 2014 in Melbourne, Australia.

The results from the first phase of the GLORIA-AF registry programme were collected prior to the availability of novel oral anticoagulants in the participating countries. 1,063 newly diagnosed atrial fibrillation patients with a moderate to high risk of stroke were enrolled globally with results demonstrating:

  • The majority of enrolled patients should have received stroke prevention treatment as they were deemed at moderate or high risk of stroke (CHA2DS2-VASc≥2). Despite this, one in four (25.9%) patients in China received no antithrombotic therapy compared to only 8.6% in Europe
  • Most patients in China were treated with antiplatelet therapy (53.7%) versus 27.1% in Europe
  • Use of warfarin is lowest in China and highest in Europe
  • Nearly two thirds (63.9%) of atrial fibrillation patients in Europe received warfarin compared to only 20.3% in China
  • Overall warfarin was most frequently prescribed for patients at high risk of stroke (36.1%, CHA2DS2-VASc≥2) versus those deemed at moderate risk of stroke (20.1%, CHA2DS2-VASc=1)

“These data show that more patients with atrial fibrillation in China were at potentially increased risk of stroke compared to Europe due to no treatment or lower usage of effective anticoagulants,” says Chang-Sheng Ma, professor and department chair, Department of Cardiology, Beijing Anzhen Hospital, Capital Medical University, China and member of the GLORIA-AF Steering Committee. “The ongoing publication of results from the GLORIA-AF registry programme will help physicians, especially those based in China, to recognise that the gap between prescribing patterns in China compared to other parts of the world needs to be bridged. We look forward to future results which will enable us to advance management of atrial fibrillation and to ultimately better protect patients against a potentially devastating stroke wherever in the world they live.”

Boehringer Ingelheim launched the GLORIA-AF registry programme, the Global Registry on Long-Term Oral Antithrombotic Treatment in Patients with Atrial Fibrillation, to provide important scientific information from everyday clinical practice on antithrombotic prescribing patterns and patient outcomes. GLORIA-AF which will enrol up to 56, 000 patients in 50 countries, is set to become one of the largest atrial fibrillation registries worldwide. Patient enrolment into the registry programme has now commenced in all major regions of the world with over 11,000 patients already participating in the registry.