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Should I Start Taking A Low-Dose Aspirin Regimen?

Updated on April 20, 2013

For centuries man has used tree bark and plants to make medicines and remedies. Hippocrates, the Greek philosopher and "Father of Western Medicine", found that the bark and leaves of the willow tree could be used to make a powder that would relieve headache, pain and fever. From then, around 380 B.C., scientists, doctors, and others tried for years to make a dependable pain and fever relief aid to help the sick and ailing.

Although it was made by previous chemists, Aspirin, or acetylsalicylic acid, was first made marketable by Bayer AG in Germany in 1897 and was soon marketed around the world in 1899. Since then, many people have used Aspirin for pain, aches, arthritis, fever and more. Although there are some contraindications for aspirin use, it is widely accepted for many different uses.

In the late 20th century, doctors began recommending aspirin for other, preventative, reasons. People now are given aspirin during a heart attack, after surgery, to prevent heart attack, and possibly to prevent cancer. Is a daily aspirin regimen right for you or one of your loved ones?

New Research Brings Hope For Fight With Cancer

There is currently a great deal of excitement in medical circles about new possibilities of gaining the upper hand against cancer. Apparently, a group of British medical researchers, after studying over 25,000 patients with a history of taking low dose aspirin, have found a possible correlation between long term treatment of low dose aspirin and lower death rates from multiple types of cancer.  Could it be that aspirin prevents cancer?

This is definitely promising, and though many questions arise, the fact that the study included such a broad field and a was over a long time span could be the aspect that underscores the research findings. This research was done on participants who had been on an aspirin regimen for at least 4 years.

Although the research was good and the news is great, you still should consult your physician before begining an aspirin regemin for various different reasons.

Why Should I Not Begin Taking Low Dose Aspirin?

How Often Do You Take Aspirin?

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The rush by many to simply say, "I'm taking low dose aspirin starting today!" should be tempered by some calm advice. As always, never begin taking any medication regimen without the advise of your personal physician! Due to the possibility that you may have issues with anemia, GI bleeds, allergies, or current prescriptions for blood thinners, medical advice is always needed to begin taking aspirin daily.

Another reason not to rush to the store and buy a large bottle of low dose aspirin is that more time is needed. As with any medical research, when a correlation is found, the exact cause of that correlation must be found and confirmed before broad scale change in medical direction could be even a possibility. Too often people hear of this study or that research and assume that it is conclusive. Just as it takes years to develop new medications, many trials and refocused studies will have to be done before doctors will be able to place people on aspirin solely to lessen the risk of cancer.

Should you decide to ask your primary care physician about beginning a low dose aspirin regimen, be sure to go over the list of medications you are already on and confirm that the aspirin will not bring complications with your current medical conditions. Also remember to take enteric coated, low dose aspirin, which will be more gentle on your stomach.

Aspirin Regimen For Those With High Risk Of Heart Attack

Whether you feel a daily aspirin regimen to avoid cancer is a good idea or not, many people today do take a daily low dose aspirin to help avoid dangerous heart attack causing atherosclerotic clots. Due to aspirin's anti-platelet properties, many cardiologists will prescribe a daily low dose aspirin regimen to their high risk cardiac patients.

A low level of aspirin in the body inhibits platelet aggregation which is often what makes a small clot or a atherosclerotic area in the artery larger causing a serious heart attack. Although a person may take a low dose aspirin regimen, emergency personnel will still give the patient a full dose of aspirin when heart attack is suspected due to the need for a higher level of inhibition of platelet aggregation after the initial clot is found by the body.

Although a low dose regimen may not be acceptable for those who have any level of aspirin allergy, most people do well with it and studies have shown a lower probability another heart attack or better outcomes of heart attack for those who take the aspirin. As with any medication, you should consult with your physician before taking a daily aspirin.

5 out of 5 stars from 1 rating of How Does This Apirin Regimen Info Rate?


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    • profile image

      gepeTooRs 21 months ago

      Its like you read my mind! You seem to know a lot approximately this, such as you wrote the ebook in it or something. I think that you simply could do with a few % to power the message home a bit, but other than that, this is magnificent blog. A fantastic read. I’ll definitely be back.

    • profile image

      Antoine Reding 4 years ago

      [quote]8192 characters left.[/quote]

      Point obviously applied...

      Nicely put. Cheers.

    • jdavis88 profile image

      jdavis88 4 years ago from Twitter @jdavis88hub

      thanks everyone for the comments!

    • conradofontanilla profile image

      conradofontanilla 4 years ago from Philippines

      Long time use of aspirin has side effects. It blocks action on arachidonic acid that if arachidonic acid accumulates, it converts to leukotriene that is a mediator of allergy. The result is that you will be allergic to any drug.

    • profile image

      Futamarka 4 years ago

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    • profile image

      LEE 5 years ago

      I use a med-q pill box for my asprin. I fill it for two weeks and set the rminder larm to go off a 10PM. keeps me from forgetting my daily pill

    • profile image

      aipsxadcx 5 years ago

      Hello here is a good forum

      I spent 5 hours searching in the network, until find your forum! I think, I shall stay here for a long time!

    • conradofontanilla profile image

      conradofontanilla 5 years ago from Philippines

      Right you are to say that correlation does not pinpoint cause. Correlation is a tool in epidemiology. Research in eicosanoids showed that aspirin blocks the production of prostaglandins and superoxide by inhibiting the action of the enzyme cyclooxygenase (COX) on arachidonic acid (Sears, B. Ph.D. The Zone. 1995). Prostaglandins are eicosanoids that consist of prostacyclin and thromboxane. Thromboxane promotes constriction of arteries and aggregation of blood platelets that can result in clot. A clot that lodges on heart valve or narrowed artery can block blood flow that may result in heart attack. In short, aspirin blocks blood clot. That is how it prevents heart attack.

      However, it also partially blocks production of prostacyclin that counters thromboxane; it dilates arteries that allows more blood flow. The reason COX-2 inhibitors induce heart attack and stroke is that they block thromboxane and prostacyclin production altogether. We need both thromboxane and prostacyclin, only they should be balanced. Some conventional medicine physicians may not be familiar with eicosanoids and free radicals so they may scorn both and fail to understand how aspirin works to prevent heart attack and cancer. Superoxide, free radicals for that matter, cause cancer. I have just posted a Hub "How aspirin prevents heart attack, stroke and cancer but take aspirin with caution."

    • profile image

      Howard 6 years ago

      I was always forgetting until I bought a MED-Q aspirin dispenser. It has dual reminder technology and makes it impossible for me to forget my Aspirin. It takes advantage of technology to make it so I never forget. Costs less than 50 dollars but has become priceless to me


    • onceuponatime66 profile image

      Jackie Paulson 7 years ago from USA IL

      I have read up on aspirin being the new wonder drug. I have been an advil lover for ever. It takes care of pain and inflammation for me. Now you opened my eyes. Great hub.

    • jdavis88 profile image

      jdavis88 7 years ago from Twitter @jdavis88hub

      I think the real true concerns with aspirin are if 1. You are anemic, 2. You are on blood thinning prescriptions. Low dose will not cause a problem with your stomach ( i.e. Ulcers) as long as you take enteric coated low dose aspirin.

    • Pollyannalana profile image

      Pollyannalana 7 years ago from US

      Hard to believe it could but who knows? Everyone warns about aspirin and I have tried to use as little as possible and take Tylenol only to find out it raises blood pressure which is a serious problem for me. So I am going to more aspirin less Tylenol. I have discovered for myself that apple cider seems to be a pain reliever. Voted you up, interesting. Polly

    • Kosmo profile image

      Kelley 7 years ago from California

      Aspirin truly is a wonder drug. But, regardless of the research, I'm not sure I believe its regular use can prevent cancer of the colon or whatever. Let's hope it's true, though. Later!

    • Kaye McCulloch profile image

      Kaye McCulloch 7 years ago from Australia

      Good hub, interesting reading thanks. Good point about waiting for more research.

    • jdavis88 profile image

      jdavis88 7 years ago from Twitter @jdavis88hub

      Thanks! I see a lot of people on my job who take aspirin without consulting their doctor.

    • Laura Marie profile image

      Laura Marie 7 years ago from UK

      Great hub on a topic which is making the headlines at the minute

    • jdavis88 profile image

      jdavis88 7 years ago from Twitter @jdavis88hub

      Thanks for reading!

    • LAMC profile image

      LAMC 7 years ago from Oxford, UK

      Interesting and informative! Thank you.

    • jdavis88 profile image

      jdavis88 7 years ago from Twitter @jdavis88hub

      I agree. Probably won't be long before cardiac drugs include aspirin in it like some pain relievers do like percodan.

    • lyndoman profile image

      lyndoman 7 years ago from London

      It seems that Aspirin is the new wonder drug, although the drug company no longer has a patent on it, so not worth pushing it.

    • jdavis88 profile image

      jdavis88 7 years ago from Twitter @jdavis88hub

      They are used for many other issues, and are relatively harmless, but for some people they can cause problems. Thanks!!

    • Mandeeadair profile image

      Mandeeadair 7 years ago from California

      Interesting....I took a low dose aspirin when I was pregnant due to some issues I had.....I think it might be a good thing. Good hub. Thanks for the info.