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Millions should stop taking aspirin for heart health, the study says



Millions of people who take aspirin to prevent a heart attack may need to think about the p-pop, Harvard researchers reported Monday.

A daily low dose of aspirin is recommended for people who have already had a heart attack or stroke and for those diagnosed with heart disease.

But for the otherwise healthy, this advice has chosen. Guidelines released this year exclude routine aspirin use for many older adults who do not already have heart disease – and said it is only for some younger people according to doctor's orders.

How many people need to get this message?

29 million people 40 and older took an aspirin a day even though they had no known heart disease in 201

7, the latest available data, according to a new study by Harvard and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. About 6.6 million of them did it on their own – a doctor never recommended it.

And nearly half of people over 70 who do not have heart disease – estimated at about 10 million – daily took aspirin for prevention, researchers reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

"Many patients are confused about this," says Dr. Colin O'Brien, a senior internal medicine resident of Beth Israel, led the study.

After all, for several years, doctors urged people to utilize aspirin's blood thinning properties to reduce the risk of a first heart attack or stroke. Since last year, three surprising new studies challenged that dogma. These studies were some of the biggest and longest to test aspirin in people with low and moderate risk of heart attack, and found only marginal benefit to anyone, especially for older adults. Still, aspirin users experienced significantly more bleeding in the digestive system, along with some other side effects.


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