So many people use aspirin as a primary prevention of heart disease. This recommendation is wildly outdated, as research now shows it should not be used for primary or secondary prevention! Over the years, more and more questions have been raised about their safety and effectiveness.
Worldwide, aspirin has been distributed and promoted as a prevention of heart disease for decades. Many parts of the world have taken on undeniable research that ruins any justification for its use to prevent cardiovascular disease.
In Canada, just over 5 million adults use aspirin to prevent heart disease, but new evidence from the Canadian Medical Association Journal suggests they stop (1).
Under the radar, the American College of Cardiology reversed the extremely routine medical advice and stopped prescribing aspirin for heart disease prevention. Something probably worthy of a headline or two.
Side note, I highly recommend our podcast episode with Dr. Stephen Hussey. We discussed -
Why have we seen this reversal?
Many research papers explain the change in recommendation, but one of them found no benefit and significant risk of using low-dose aspirin for those who had not had a previous heart attack (2). Studies concluded that there is no reliable evidence that the current recommendation of aspirin for heart disease is beneficial.
What about people with Risk Factors?
It might make sense that aspirin would not benefit people without other risk factors, but what about those with diabetes, cholesterol problems or high blood pressure? Well, the research found that the common aspirin recommendation does not reduce the risk of heart disease in this group, but increases the likelihood of dangerous side effects, such as brain or gut bleeds (3).
This extremely worrying study showed that people with no previous history of cardiovascular events take low-dose aspirin, and their risk of dying from any cause was higher.
I bet you know at least one person who takes this drug to prevent heart disease.
At the moment, in Canada, they no longer recommend aspirin for primary prevention of cardiovascular disease for people without a history of heart problems. They continue to recommend it to people with a history of heart disease, but the guidelines are clear. It is not recommended to prevent a first vascular event.
Here at Truehope Canada, we are discussing hypertension this month. Check out our videos, which discuss how our products naturally support you against high blood pressure.
The time to take control is now. Become your own health advocate, and form an alliance with your primary care physician. Work with your doctor, question them, challenge them and become part of the process. They do not know everything, they are wrong all the time, and the science is constantly changing.
Have the best week!
Simon Brazier. Dip HN, NNCP
CMAJMarch 23, 2020 192 (12) E302-E311; DOI: https://doi.org/10.1503/cmaj.191599
European Heart Journal, Volume 34, Issue 44, 21 November 2013, Pages 3403–3411, https://doi.org/10.1093/eurheartj/eht058
N Engl J Med 2018; 379:1529-1539 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa1804988