Aspirin Use

Evaluating Risk Factors: Aspirin Use

Evaluating your likely current (and near future) state of health means taking into account the risk factors — such as aspirin use — that affect you.   Our medical diagnosis tool, The Analyst™, identifies major risk factors by asking the right questions.

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In the Supplement And Medication Use section of the questionnaire, The Analyst™ will ask the following question about aspirin use:
How often do you use aspirin?
Possible responses:
→ Don't know
→ Never / less that once a year
→ Occasionally / only when I need it
→ Regularly - several times a month
→ Often - daily or almost daily

The Diagnostic Process

Based on your response to this question, which may indicate no aspirin use, some aspirin use, regular aspirin use or frequent aspirin use, The Analyst™ will use differential diagnosis to consider possibilities such as:
Bleeding Tendency

Aspirin thins the blood and can increase bleeding.

Gastric/Peptic/Duodenal Ulcers

Inflammation may be caused by aspirin and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs), but the bacterium H. pylori is generally responsible.

Gastrointestinal Bleeding

Aspirin may damage the lining of the stomach, but it is believed that the bacterium H. pylori is usually the cause.

Macular Degeneration

A study published in October 2011 and involving 4,000 elderly participants across Europe found that those who took aspirin every day were twice as likely to be diagnosed with late stage age-related age-related macular degeneration (AMD) as those who did not.

During another major study at the Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience and Academic Medical Centre, researchers followed 839 people and found that among those who took aspirin each day, around 4% had an advanced form of the disease called neovascular or 'wet' AMD, which leads to the most profound blindness.  In comparison, just 2% who took aspirin less frequently had the same disease.

A more conclusive Australian study was published January 2013 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and followed 2,400 subjects for 15 years.  It found that 3.7% of the 'occasional' users of aspirin and 9.4% of the 'regular' users developed wet AMD.

However, for those suffering from heart disease, the benefits of taking aspirin outweigh the risks posed to their vision.

Tinnitus

Aspirin can cause tinnitus at high doses.

... and also reduce your risk factors for:
Alzheimer's Disease

People who regularly take aspirin or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) have a reduced risk of developing Alzheimer's Disease.

Bile Duct Cancer

Several studies have noted a reduction in the risk of esophageal, gastric and biliary cancers among regular aspirin users.

Breast Cancer

Aspirin may slightly reduce risk of estrogen receptor positive forms of breast cancer.

Cancer, General

Several studies have demonstrated reduced mortality from various cancers among regular aspirin users.  A 2012 study showed a large reduction in death from esophageal, stomach and colon cancers among daily aspirin users, and a 12% reduction for other types of cancer.  [JNCI J Natl Cancer Inst (2012) 104 (16): pp1208-1217]

Cirrhosis of the Liver

A study published on November 28th, 2012 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute showed that those who used aspirin saw a 45% reduction in the risk of death from chronic liver disease.  The study followed 300,000 people aged between 51 and 70 for between 10 and 12 years.  Those who took other types of NSAIDs had a 26% lower chance of dying from chronic liver disease, but had no corresponding reduction in the risk of liver cancer.

Colon Cancer

Aspirin has been found to reduce the risk of colorectal cancer by up to 60%, with researchers finding that 600mg of aspirin per day for 25 months substantially reduces cancer incidence after 5 years in carriers of hereditary colorectal cancer.

Coronary Disease / Heart Attack

A November 2012 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine showed a 34% reduction in the risk of death associated with heart attack among patients who used aspirin daily.

Esophageal Cancer

Several studies have noted a reduction in the risk of esophageal, gastric and biliary cancers among regular aspirin users.  A 2012 study showed that those who used aspirin daily had a 40% lower risk of death from esophageal cancer.  [JNCI J Natl Cancer Inst (2012) 104 (16): pp1208-1217]

Liver Cancer

A study published on November 28th, 2012 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute showed that those who used aspirin to treat pain saw a 41% reduction in their risk of developing liver cancer.  However, the incidence of liver cancer in the general population is already very low, so the risks from aspirin far outweigh the potential benefits in those who are not at increased risk of liver cancer or liver disease.

Pancreatic Cancer

Several studies have noted a reduction in the risk of esophageal, gastric and biliary cancers among regular aspirin users.

Stomach Cancer

Several studies have noted a reduction in the risk of esophageal, gastric and biliary cancers among regular aspirin users.  A 2012 study showed that those who used aspirin daily had a 40% lower risk of death from stomach cancer.  [JNCI J Natl Cancer Inst (2012) 104 (16): pp1208-1217]

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