Thursday, 13 December, 2018

Low dose aspirin risks overwhelm benefits in healthy elderly

The report informs consuming Aspirin might also increase the risk of a potential internal bleeding The report informs consuming Aspirin might also increase the risk of a potential internal bleeding
Johnnie Parks | 18 September, 2018, 12:19

The Monash University-lead ASPREE (ASPirin in Reducing Events in the Elderly) trial, involving more than 19,000 patients in Australia and the U.S., found that one 100mg aspirin a day did not prolong life free of disability, and did not significantly reduce the risk of a first heart attack or stroke among healthy participants.

"These findings will help inform prescribing doctors, who have always been uncertain about whether to recommend aspirin to healthy patients who do not have a clear medical reason for doing so".

In line with known side-effects of the drug, those in the aspirin group experienced more internal bleeding, with 3.8% of those on the drug having serious medical conditions ranging from stroke to gastrointestinal bleeds, compared with 2.7% in the placebo group.

The results showed the aspirin had no effect on whether people would suffer from dementia or a disability. They were then followed for a median of 4.7 years.

There was also an increase in cancer deaths in the aspirin-treated group, which surprised the researchers.

At the end of the trial, 90.3 percent of the aspirin-treated patients were still alive, compared to 90.5 percent of those who received placebos. "Aspirin is the most widely used of all preventive drugs and an answer to this question is long overdue".

The participants were randomly assigned to receive either 100 milligrams per day of aspirin or a placebo pill.

Our findings mean millions of healthy people over the age of 70, and their doctors, will now know daily aspirin is not the answer to prolonging good health.

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According to these three new studies, however, taking a low-dose aspirin daily is, at best, a waste of money for healthy older adults.

"We knew there would an increased risk of bleeding with aspirin, because there has always been", said study coauthor Dr. Anne Murray, a geriatrician and epidemiologist at the Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute and the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.

"If you don't need it, don't start it", Dr. John McNeil, lead author of the study and member of the department of epidemiology and preventive medicine at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, told The New York Times.

Another clinical trial has added more evidence against the fairly common practice of prescribing aspirin to healthy older adults in order to prevent the onset of cardiovascular disease.

The first study comes from Monash University in Australia, where researchers followed almost 20,000 people across Australia and the US for a period of five years.

As a result of the third study, researchers concluded that there was a higher cause of death in the aspirin test group, in those who were believed to be healthy, than in the placebo test group.

Hadley noted only 11 percent of participants had regularly taken low-dose aspirin before entering the study. "In India, self treatment with aspirin is often seen, and it should be strictly forbidden", said Anoop Misra, chairman, Fortis-C-DOC Centre of Excellence for Diabetes, Metabolic Diseases and Endocrinology.

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