Baby Aspirin May Be Best for Heart

Baby aspirin may be the best aspirin dose for heart health,
according to a new research review.

A single pill of baby aspirin contains 81 milligrams of aspirin. That's
about a quarter of the 325-milligram dose in an adult aspirin pill.

The new research review states that in the U.S., the most commonly
prescribed aspirin dose for heart health is 81 milligrams per day.

The review shows that aspirin doses greater than 81 milligrams per day
haven't been proven better than baby aspirin for the heart and may increase the
chances of stomach bleeding.

The doctors who worked on the review included Charles Campbell, MD, of the
University of Kentucky's Gill Heart Institute.

They analyzed data from 11 studies on aspirin and heart disease.

The studies, conducted from 1989 to 2004, included more than 40,000 patients
taking daily aspirin doses ranging from 30 milligrams to 1,300 milligrams. Most
of the patients already had heart disease.

The studies' designs and lengths varied, ranging from in-hospital treatment
of heart attack patients to a four-year study of people who had survived minor
strokes.

"While aspirin is an effective drug for the prevention of clots, the
downside of aspirin therapy is an increased tendency for bleeding, particularly
from the gastrointestinal tract," Campbell says in a University of Kentucky
news release.

"We believe the minimum effective dose should be used," Campbell
says.

However, Campbell and colleagues note that more research is needed to see if
certain groups of people would benefit from higher aspirin doses.

The review appears in The Journal of the American Medical
Association
.



By Miranda Hitti
Reviewed by Louise Chang
B)2005-2006 WebMD, Inc. All rights reserved

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