Bayer can’t claim that aspirin will prevent your heart attack

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Bayer Low Dose Aspirin
Bayer Low Dose Aspirin

WASHINGTON, May 6, 2014 – Bayer’s advertising wants you to believe differently, but a low-dose aspirin a day doesn’t necessarily keep the doctor, stroke or heart attack away. Dr. Sanjay Gupta on CNN questioned the benefits of low-dose aspirin today.

Bayer promotes the claim that one low-dose, or 81mg baby aspirin, a day can ward off a first heart attack.  And the risks of taking aspirin, mostly a higher risk of bleeding, were far outweighed by the benefits.

According to the Mayo Clinic daily aspirin therapy, when advised by your doctor, may lower your risk of heart attack, among many other things from asthma to Azheimers, because aspirin interferes with your bloods clotting action.  Aspirin reduces the clumping action of platelets, which could possibly prevent a heart attack caused by arterial blockage.


From Mayo:

You shouldn’t start daily aspirin therapy on your own in an effort to prevent a heart attack. Your doctor may suggest daily aspirin therapy if:

  • You’ve already had a heart attack or stroke
  • You haven’t had a heart attack, but you have had a stent placed in a coronary artery, have had coronary bypass surgery, or you have chest pain due to coronary artery disease (angina)
  • You’ve never had a heart attack, but you’re at high risk of having one
  • You’re a man with diabetes older than 50, or a woman with diabetes older than 60

You shouldn’t start daily aspirin therapy on your own in an effort to prevent a heart attack. Your doctor may suggest daily aspirin therapy if:

  • You’ve already had a heart attack or stroke
  • You haven’t had a heart attack, but you have had a stent placed in a coronary artery, have had coronary bypass surgery, or you have chest pain due to coronary artery disease (angina)
  • You’ve never had a heart attack, but you’re at high risk of having one
  • You’re a man with diabetes older than 50, or a woman with diabetes older than 60

Reports are that the benefits to those who have never had a heart attack are low, if not non-existent.  For those who have already had a heart episode, or stroke, event, there may be some benefit.

But Bayer is not going to be able to make the claim anytime that it will prevent heart attacks anytime soon.  As always, check with your doctor and then weigh any benefits / risks to you and your personal health history.

But don’t take your daily aspirin thinking it will eliminate the need for other healthy heart actions – including diet and exercise.

As always, consult your doctor  and consider your own health and health history before starting any diet, exercise or aspirin regime.

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