“Aspirin In Low Doses Has Many Benefits”

A University of Southern California study reported that for older Americans with a high risk of heart disease, taking low–dose aspirin every day could reduce their risk of a heart attack, prevent some cancers and cancer death, extend their lives and save the lives of hundreds of thousands of patients over the course of 20 years. Low dose aspirin, 80 mg or less daily, is the dosage in discussion. However, the long-term benefits of low-dose, daily aspirin were questioned this year after the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) issued updated aspirin guidelines that declared the clinical benefit of aspirin, but seemed at odds with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The FDA was concerned that some patients, particularly those 60 and older, face an increased risk of stroke and bleeding — both gastrointestinal and in the brain — if they take aspirin daily. Étienne Gaudette, an assistant professor at the USC School of Pharmacy and policy director of the USC Royal Center for Health Policy Simulation, said, “The problem that this creates for Americans and medical professionals is that the information about aspirin is confusing.

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