Aspirin To Prevent First Heart Attack In Seniors Not Validated

Aspirin has often been recommended to senior citizens by doctors as a way to prevent getting their first heart attack. Aspirin is a blood thinner — and while it has been successful in preventing a second and third heart attack — or stroke, the benefit to prevent a first heart attack is really not clear.

A study published in The Lancet suggests there is no benefit. The researchers say, “The use of aspirin in the primary prevention of cardiovascular events remains controversial,” as the authors wrote in the summary of their results.

 

Aspirin: Preventing Heart Attacks Not Supported By Data

The study examined 12,500 participants considered to be at moderate cardiovascular risk. The results showed that the number of heart attacks and strokes for those given aspirin and those given a placebo were nearly the same. The group taking a placebo had just 12 more heart attacks or strokes . Clearly, aspirin did not reduce the occurrence of major cardiovascular events in this study.

 

The researchers suggest that any decision on whether to use it for protection to prevent heart attacks should be made in consultation with their doctor. It must be taken into consideration if patients are taking any other medications. These can include drugs to lower blood pressure and lipids

Otherwise, the study found that it does help for patients with established cardiovascular disease. It even outweighs the risk of bleeding that comes with its blood-thinning properties.

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