New research analysis has found that for some patients the risk from the drug of increased bleeding events outweighs its benefits in preventing heart attacks and strokes
Aspirin has long been believed to help prevent heart attacks and strokes, and some studies have shown it to have a protective effect against some cancers. As a result, some people religiously pop a low-dose aspirin after breakfast every day (never take one on an empty stomach). But now its status as a wonder drug has dipped somewhat, following a major review of the trial evidence.
The Journal of the American Medical Association has just published a meta-analysis (a review of the results of a large number of trials, which can therefore come to more certain conclusions) of the association of aspirin use with cardiovascular and bleeding events. It found that the well-known risk that aspirin can cause internal bleeding is as great – or sometimes higher – than the benefits of preventing heart attacks and strokes.