The American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association will soon release new guidelines on the prevention of cardiovascular disease, which will include recommendations on the use of aspirin for the prevention of cardiac events. With aspirin use expected to have the biggest potential change in current practices, Binghamton University Clinical Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice Amanda Mogul cites recent studies as evidence that aspirin as a preventative measure may not be worth the risk.
Previous evidence has shown significant benefits of aspirin as a preventative measure of cardiac events, leading to practice guidelines to recommend aspirin in patients over 50 with a number of significant cardiovascular risk factors, such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, etc. Recent studies have shown, however, that aspirin may not be as effective at preventing cardiac events as previously shown, and that the risk of bleeding is significant.
"New studies are showing that aspirin may not be as beneficial at preventing primary cardiovascular disease as we once thought, and comes at the price of a significant risk of bleeding,” said Mogul. “The new guidelines will provide more direction regarding which patients that aspirin may indicated for, after a conversation with their doctor regarding the risks vs. benefits."