Thromboembolism, Bleeding, and Mortality Incidence of Direct Oral Anticoagulants Versus Warfarin Postbariatric Surgery

Type Article

Journal Article


K. Srivastava; N. Patel; M. Tabbara; A. Liew; I. Zaghloul; M. M. Migliore; R. A. Mekary

Year of publication



Am J Med








BACKGROUND: There is no randomized controlled trial comparing direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) and warfarin following bariatric surgery to date. The mortality, thromboembolism, and bleeding risk of DOACs in comparison with warfarin following bariatric surgery remains unclear. We aimed to provide a clinical comparison between DOACs and warfarin for these 3 prespecified outcomes. METHODS: A systematic literature search was performed on November 10, 2019, using PubMed, Embase,, and Cochrane databases. Studies with adult patients who were on either warfarin or DOACs following bariatric surgery and reported the incidence of thromboembolism, bleeding, or mortality were included. Pooled incidence for these prespecified outcomes and its 95% confidence interval (CI) were calculated for each drug separately using the random-effects model, along with a nonadjusted P value comparing the 2 subgroups. RESULTS: A total of 11 studies (805 patients) were included. Comparing DOACs to warfarin, the following pooled incidences were observed for mortality (DOACs: 3.0%; 95% CI 0.4%-18.6% versus warfarin: 1.5%; 95% CI 0.8%-2.9%; P value comparing the 2 subgroups = .38), thromboembolism (DOACs: 4.9%; 95% CI 1%-21.1% versus warfarin: 1.5%; 95% CI 0.8%-2.9%; P value = .18), and bleeding (DOACs: 3.9%; 95% CI 0.7%-18.2% versus warfarin: 11.3%; 95% CI 5.7%-21.4%; P value = .23). CONCLUSION: The results of our meta-analysis remain hypothesis-generating, providing rationale for future randomized controlled trial design or well-designed comparative observational studies. Currently, it does not support the change in the current recommendation from warfarin to DOACs following bariatric surgery.