Some people swear by it. That an aspirin a day has done them wonders. Many who take it do so to lower blood pressure, especially if they’ve already experienced a heart attack or stroke, but new research says daily low-dose (81 mg) aspirin may not be for everyone.
The results of several new 2018 and 2019 studies have found that the risks of taking a daily aspirin may not outweigh the benefits. People who are at high risk or who have experienced a heart attack or stroke often take aspirin to help avoid a recurrence, but the results of several multi-year studies have yielded similar results.
That while taking an aspirin a day was helpful for some people, it also increased the risk of bleeding in others, some to the point that hospitalization was required.
So, what does an aspirin a day do? How exactly is aspirin supposed to help? In a short form, Mayo Clinic doctors explain that aspirin interferes with your blood’s clotting action and that aspirin therapy reduces the clumping action of platelets — possibly preventing a heart attack.
But doctors agree that aspirin therapy is not for everyone, especially healthy people who have never experienced a heart attack or who are not considered high risk.
A research writer with the American Heart Association says “We’re talking about healthy people who don’t have known heart disease or stroke, who might have been considering or already taking an aspirin to prevent that heart attack or stroke in the first place.”
The Heart and Stroke Association noted that from the recent research studies, “the benefit from taking a daily low-dose aspirin was offset by the danger of internal bleeding and other side effects in people considered to be at low or moderate risk for heart disease,” adding “One study in particular found aspirin had no obvious benefit for healthy people older than 70 but found evidence for harm.”
The NHS (National Health Services) is one of many professional institutions that advise people only take an aspirin a day on the advice of a doctor, since new research shows that it may not provide health advantages for everyone.