Eliquis vs Xarelto – How Each Work, Side Effects, Effectiveness

Posted by Prescription Hope - See Editorial Guidelines (Last Updated On: Fri Apr 28 2023)

Eliquis and Xarelto are both brand name medications that are considered anticoagulant drugs used to treat blood clots. Anticoagulants are blood thinners that help treat and prevent blood clots caused by various conditions affecting the heart and blood vessels.

This article will discuss Eliquis vs Xarelto, including the similarities, differences, how they work, and which is more effective. First, here is a quick answer to get us started, then we will get into the details.

Eliquis vs Xarelto: Eliquis and Xarelto are two similar brand name medications manufactured by different companies. They both treat conditions such as atrial fibrillation (AFib), pulmonary embolism (PE), deep vein thrombosis (DVT), and blood clots that can occur after a hip or knee surgery. Despite their similarities, each of these drugs has a different active ingredient and come in different dosages.

With this brief explanation in mind, let’s get into the specifics around Eliquis vs Xarelto.

Overview of Eliquis

Eliquis vs Xarelto

Eliquis is manufactured by Pfizer and contains the active ingredient apixaban. This medication comes in the form of tablets taken orally. It is prescribed to prevent heart attack, stroke, and blood clots caused by the following conditions:

  • Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis
  • Pulmonary Embolism
  • Hip or Knee Surgery

Eliquis comes in two dosage forms – 2.5 mg and 5 mg.

Overview of Xarelto

Xarelto is manufactured by Janssen, which is a pharmaceutical company belonging to Johnson and Johnson. It contains the active ingredient rivaroxaban, which also comes in the form of tablets that are taken by mouth. Like Eliquis, it is used to treat and prevent heart attacks, strokes, and blood clots caused by the following conditions:

  • Nonvalvular Atrial Fibrillation
  • Coronary Artery Disease
  • Pulmonary Embolism
  • Deep Vein Thrombosis
  • Peripheral Artery Disease
  • Knee or Hip Replacement Surgery

Xarelto comes in 4 different dosages – 2.5 mg, 10 mg, 15 mg, and 20 mg.

How They Work – Eliquis vs Xarelto

Eliquis and Xarelto both have very similar mechanisms of action. Both drugs target a blood-clotting factor called Xa. Xa plays a crucial role in the blood-clotting process and is crucial for many individuals.

However, for patients that are at an increased risk of having a blood clot, Factor Xa needs to be blocked. So, both Eliquis and Xarelto work to block the effect of Factor Xa. Thus, these medicines lower one’s chances of having a fatal blood clot or stroke.

Due to how these medications work, they are considered blood thinners. In simple terms, they allow blood to flow more freely throughout the body.

Despite how beneficial Eliquis and Xarelto are for many patients, there are side effects to be aware of.

Side Effects of Eliquis vs Xarelto

Eliquis and Xarelto both have the same side effects, which may include bleeding, hematoma, and allergic reactions.

Because both medicines are blood thinners, they can increase one’s chances of bleeding, which can be serious and even life-threatening. You may experience easy bruising, and it can take longer for bleeding to stop when you are taking blood thinners. You may have a higher risk of bleeding if you take other medicines, such as Aspirin, warfarin, NSAIDs, Plavix, SSRIs, or medicines containing heparin.

Call your doctor immediately if you experience the following symptoms of bleeding:

  • Unexpected bleeding or excessive bleeding (nosebleeds, abnormal menstrual bleeding, etc.)
  • Red, pink, or brown urine
  • Bright red or black stool
  • Cough or vomit up blood
  • Headaches
  • Feeling dizzy and weak
  • Pain, swelling, or drainage around wounds

Hematomas, also known as spinal or epidural blood clots, can occur when patients receive an injection of medicine into their spinal region while taking a blood thinner. A spinal blood clot can result in permanent damage and paralysis.

Allergic reactions can occur if you are allergic to any of the ingredients in either of these medicines. Allergic reactions can include a rash, hives, itching, and trouble breathing. You should not take Eliquis or Xarelto if you are allergic to any of the ingredients.

Safety Information & Warnings – Eliquis vs Xarelto

Whether you are taking Eliquis or Xarelto, you should take them exactly as your doctor has prescribed them. Eliquis is taken twice a day with or without food. The way you should take Xarelto will depend on which condition you are being treated for and its severity. In some cases, you may have to take the Xarelto tablet with a meal.

Patients should not take Eliquis or Xarelto if they:

  • Have artificial heart valves
  • Have antiphospholipid syndrome (APS)
  • Have certain types of abnormal bleeding
  • Have experienced a past allergic reaction to the medicine or ingredients in the medicine

Patients should discuss their medical history with their doctor before starting Eliquis or Xarelto. Especially let your doctor know if you have had kidney or liver problems, antiphospholipid syndrome, or bleeding problems.

Let your doctor know if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding. The risks and benefits should be considered before continuing treatment. Talk to your doctor about the best way to feed your child while being treated with either medicine. Taking a blood thinner during pregnancy may increase the risk of bleeding in you or your unborn child.

Eliquis vs Xarelto

Patients must talk to their doctor about other medications they are taking, as certain drug interactions can occur, leading to adverse reactions. Eliquis and Xarelto can possibly interact with drugs considered to be strong enzyme inhibitors, strong enzyme inducers, antidepressants, and other anticoagulants.

Eliquis vs Xarelto Cost Comparison

Eliquis and Xarelto are both competitively priced. The lowest out-of-pocket cost for each of these prescription drugs is around $470 for a one-month supply. This price does not consider one’s insurance plan or other drug coupons.

If you can purchase Eliquis or Xarelto through Prescription Hope for just $60.00 a month through Prescription Hope’s medication access service if you qualify .

Which is More Effective?

Eliquis and Xarelto are both effective at treating the conditions they are approved to treat. However, each person’s experience with these medications may differ.

A study was done to compare the safety and efficacy of Eliquis vs Xarelto, particularly when it comes to treating acute venous thromboembolism (VTE). The results showed that both medications were equally effective at treating the condition, but Eliquis showed less bleeding side effects than Xarelto.

Therefore, Eliquis may be the safer option for some individuals.

On the other hand, Xarelto comes in more dosage options and is approved to treat a wider range of conditions. So, the effectiveness of Eliquis vs Xarelto will depend upon which conditions you need treatment for and how well you respond to each medicine.

Thus, the decision for which medication is right for you should be determined by your healthcare provider. They will be able to evaluate and monitor your condition, as well as determine which is safest for you after taking into account your medical history and other medications you are taking.


We hope this article has given you a better understanding of Eliquis vs Xarelto. As always, consult your doctor for questions regarding your specific health needs.

If you are struggling to afford your medications, then Prescription Hope may be able to help. The team here works to provide patients with the medicines they need at a set, affordable cost by working directly with pharmaceutical manufacturers. Enroll with us and start saving money !