Recommendations On Who Should Take Aspirin.
We are aware that the New York Times published an article on October 12th (“Aspirin Use to Prevent Heart Attack or Stroke Should be Curtailed. U.S Panel Says”) and we would like to give our patients perspective and guidance.
This article is a summary of information known since 2018 when several trials were published that changed the recommendations on the routine use of aspirin in people without prior history of stroke, coronary disease (with or without prior heart attack), or peripheral vascular disease. What the research says is that in the absence of those conditions, aspirin to prevent one of these conditions has a higher risk of causing bleeding than preventing a patient from developing one of these conditions.
People with the following conditions should remain on 81 mg of aspirin:
- prior stroke
- heart attack or coronary stent
- known coronary disease, including having been told you have a positive calcium score
- peripheral vascular disease or peripheral vascular stent
- History of TIA or stroke
Check with your doctor, but people who probably do not need aspirin include people without the above listed conditions, but are taking aspirin:
- Because they have a family history of heart disease
- Because they are diabetic
- Because they think everyone should be on aspirin.
In summary, aspirin has shifted from a “why not” drug (“why not take it, it may help”) to a “why drug” (why am I taking aspirin? Do I have one of the conditions listed above?)
Since we at Woodholme Cardiovascular Associates have been aware of these recommendations for years, you probably have been properly advised. However, if you still have questions, you can contact us. We are not commenting on the recommendations for aspirin use in pregnant women or by gastroenterologists.
The Doctors at Woodholme Cardiovascular Associates