3 Nov 2009

Aspirin shouldn't be used if no heart disease - UK doctors

10:22 pm on 3 November 2009

A British medical review journal has advised doctors to avoid automatically prescribing low doses of aspirin to patients who do not have heart disease.

The BBC reports low doses of the drug are known to reduce the chances of further heart attacks or strokes, in people who have already had one.

However, aspirin is also officially recommended for patients without heart disease as a preventative measure, despite its known side-effect of increasing the risk of internal bleeding.

The editorial in the Drug and Therapeutics Bulletin says aspirin's risks do not justify this approach.