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Does Aspirin Truly Ward Off Heart Attacks?


Posted on May 07, 2014

Physicians often tell patients to take aspirin regularly as a way to practice heart attack prevention. But experts now say that this method might be futile for many.

Fox news reports on the effectiveness of aspirin in heart attack prevention.

The Food and Drug Administration believes that aspirin might not be helpful in reducing heart attack risk.

The FDA states that they particularly do not believe that a regular aspirin regimen is necessary or helpful for people who have never had cardiovascular issues.

Fox explains, “The FDA's statement follows its decision last week to turn down a request by German drug maker Bayer AG to change the labeling on packages in order to market aspirin's value in preventing heart attacks in people who have never had cardiovascular disease. Such aspirin therapy reduces the clumping action of the blood's clotting cells, called platelets, and may prevent a heart attack, according to experts. But experts also warn that there may be serious side effects from daily use of aspirin, including internal bleeding.”

The FDA is particularly concerned about the risks that this daily aspirin regimen poses to people.

“The agency added that after carefully examining scientific data from major studies, FDA has concluded that the data do not support the use of aspirin as a preventive medication by people who have not had a heart attack, stroke or cardiovascular problems, a use that is called 'primary prevention’. The FDA said that in these people the benefit has not been established but risks - such as dangerous bleeding into the brain or stomach - are still present.”

The FDA is not saying that people who have had heart attacks should stop their daily aspirin regimen but that they should certainly be on a low dose, other cardiac care experts agree with this analysis.

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