Benefits of Daily Aspirin

A study led by Cardiff University concludes that stomach bleeds that are caused by aspirin are considerably less serious than the spontaneous bleeds that can occur in people not taking aspirin. The finding that was published in the journal Public Library of Science, with the extensive study of literature, reveals that while the regular use of the drug increases the risk of stomach bleeds by about a half, there is no valid evidence that any of these bleeds are fatal.

It was quoted by Professor Peter Elwood from Cardiff University’s School of Medicine, “Although many people use aspirin daily to reduce the risk of health problems such as cancer and heart disease, the wider use of the drug is severally limited because of the side effect of bleeding from the stomach”. Their study shows that there is no increased risk of death from stomach bleeding in people who take regular aspirin and that there will be better confidence in the drug and wider use of it by older people, leading to important reductions in deaths and disablement from heart disease and cancer across the community.

The leading causes of death and disability across the world are from heart disease and cancer. Research has shown that a small daily dose of aspirin can reduce the occurrence of both diseases by about 20-30%.

Research has also shown that low-doses of aspirin given to patients with cancer along with their chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy, is an effective additional treatment reducing the deaths of patients with bowel, and possibly other cancers, by a further 15%. This particular recent study was systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized trials to ascertain fatal gastrointestinal bleeding events attributable to preventive low-dose aspirin: no evidence of increased risk can be found in Public Library of Science.

This type of study provides the strongest evidence for drawing causal conclusions because it draws together all of the best evidence.

Dr Fredda Branyon