Despite a few benefits, daily use of aspirin can lead to an increase in the risk of bleeding. A study in Annals of Internal Medicine tells the extent to which Americans over 40 years of age are using aspirin daily. They are using aspirin for preventing heart attack and stroke.
Using low doses of aspirin can prevent heart attack and stroke
When a person bleeds, platelets – the blood clotting cells start to build up at the site of injury. These cells form a plug and seal the opening of the blood vessels. And it can stop the bleeding process.
But this blood clotting can also affect the vessels that are supplying blood to the heart. If a person already has fatty deposits in his/her vessel lining, these fat deposits may burst and form blood clot more quickly.
This clot will block the artery and halt blood flow to the heart. Over time it may lead to a heart attack. Aspirin affects the clotting action of the blood and prevents heart attack and stroke in adults at higher risk of CVDs.
The current findings show that a notable number of people may be taking aspirin without any advice from the physician. Using the data from the NHI survey 2017, the research team have found that about 29 million people over the age of 40 and without CVDs, are using aspirin.
They are using aspirin daily to prevent heart diseases. And about 6.6 million adults are taking aspirin daily without the opinion of a physician. Moreover, about 10 million people over the age of 70 years and without any history of CVD have reported using aspirin daily.
Contraindication related to the daily use of aspirin
In the past, it was a common medical opinion that using low doses of aspirin daily can prevent CVDs. In 2018, the researchers carried out three trials related to aspirin.
These trials have assessed the benefits and risks related to the use of aspirin. Low doses of aspirin can avoid blood clots, preventing CVDs.
But the results of these trials have shown an increased risk of bleeding linked with the daily use of aspirin. Altogether, these results have led to a change in the practices related to the use of aspirin.
Recent guidelines are against the use of aspirin in people with age more than 70 years. And in those with increased risk of bleeding and no CVDs.
Aspirin use is common in persons who are at high risk of getting harmed. These involve older adults and adults having peptic ulcers. People with peptic ulcers are prone to bleeding, and it can affect about one of every ten persons.
In this condition, painful sores develop on the inner lining of the stomach and upper part of the small intestine. If not treated, peptic ulcer can lead to infections and internal bleeding.
Although previous guidelines have allowed aspirin in people without an increased risk of bleeding. The current (2019) guidelines have advised avoiding the use of aspirin even in people with age over 70 years and who do not have any heart disease or stroke.
Daily use of aspirin has serious side effects, including an increased risk of internal bleeding. These results have shown a need for advising people about the benefits and risks related to the use of aspirin. Also, one should not take aspirin on his own and ask a doctor before using it daily.