Tiny Tip: Banning Factor Xa – How to remember NOACs

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There has been an increase in novel oral anticoagulants (NOACs), which often thought of by many as the non-warfarin anticoagulants. Within this group there are two subclasses:

  • Factor IIa (thrombin) inhibitors
  • Factor Xa inhibitors

One of our @MacEmerg PGY3 residents, Laura Morrison (no relation to esteemed resuscitation Canadian researcher Laurie Morrison) recently told me about a quick and dirty tip to remember what class each of the NOACs belongs to… and thereby helping you to remember its mechanism of action (MOA).

One of these things is not like the other….

Here is the tip:

Look for the suffix -xaban in the Xa inhibitors in the GENERIC name of the med.

For example:

ApiXaban <– Xa inhibitor

RivaroXaban <– Xa inhibitor

Dabiagatran <– NO “Xa” therefore not a Xa inhibitor. (Direct thrombin inhibitor) does not, therefore, fit within this model!!

Laura says you can think of it as “banning” the Xa factor to the abyss…

Laura's Tiny Tip

(NB: This does not work for the trade name…)

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Teresa Chan

Teresa Chan

Senior Editor at CanadiEM
Emergency Physician. Medical Educator. #FOAMed Supporter, Producer and Researcher. Chief Strategy Officer of CanadiEM. Associate Professor, Division of Emergency Medicine, Department of Medicine, McMaster University.
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BoringEM has been 'bringing the boring' to emergency medicine since 2012. In 2016 this Canadian blog brought its content to CanadiEM.
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