HealthDay News — New research indicates that over 11% of people taking a daily aspirin regimen are at higher risk for side effects from daily aspirin use then they are for stroke or heart attack, according to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Ravi Hira, MD, researcher on the study and a cardiologist at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, and colleagues analyzed medical records of 68,808 patients at 119 cardiology practices across the United States. The group included people with hypertension who had not yet developed cardiovascular disease.

Overall, Hira’s team found that 11.6% of patients seemed to be prescribed aspirin unnecessarily — their risks were not high enough (defined as at least a 6% chance of suffering a heart attack or stroke over the next decade) to justify the risks of long-term aspirin use. Women and younger patients were more likely than men and seniors to be using aspirin inappropriately. Also, the overall rate of misuse may be even higher than noted since many people may take daily aspirin without a doctor’s recommendation, the researchers said.

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The FDA recently weighed in on the issue, advising people against taking aspirin to prevent a first-time heart attack or stroke. But the agency also said it cannot make blanket recommendations that apply to everyone.


  1. Hira RS et al. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2015; doi:10.1016/j.jacc.2014.10.035.