The benefits of taking prescription aspirin a dose per day have been established for 65+ women who already suffer from heart disease and colon cancer among others, but its benefits for younger women who do not have these conditions have become doubtful, and could even do more harm than anticipated, a new published in the journal Heart warns.
Older women taking a low-dose of one aspirin a day have benefited from reduced risks of heart diseases stroke, and colon cancer – but researchers now find these women may be at risk of gastrointestinal bleeding which may be serious enough to cause hospitalization.
To make this clearer, Dr. John Erwin, a cardiologist at Scott & White Memorial Hospital in Temple, Texas explains that “There’s no question that aspirin can be a lifesaver for people who’ve already had a heart attack” because it can prevent a repeat of heart attack and other cardiovascular infections when taken according to prescription daily – but its benefits have not been proven to preventing first-time heart attacks – and to this end, it could cause stomach bleeding, ulcers, or even blood leaks in the brain vessels.
And to this Dr. Erwin adds that “It’s been a huge conundrum for us over the years. When it comes to primary prevention, there are relatively few patients who will get a big benefit. And there’s always the risk of harm.” Doctors warn that aspirin must be used with caution and its use individualized to reflect doctor’s examinations and prescriptions.
And Nancy Cook, a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston, says “I probably wouldn’t take aspirin unless I had a very high risk of either cardiovascular disease or colon cancer.”
The American Cancer Society and the American Heart Association warn that people should desist from popping aspirin for the sole purpose of warding off cancer, and that only aged people at high risks of developing heart attacks should consider taking aspirin according to doctor’s prescriptions.