Low dose aspirin may be an effective way to prevent deadly blood clots in the leg or lungs of patients who have experienced a previous blood clot, a new study has revealed.
The study, conducted by the National Health and Medical Research Council’s (NHMRC) Clinical Trials Centre at the University of Sydney, found that people who have suffered blood clots in the veins of the legs (deep vein thrombosis) or the lungs (pulmonary embolism) are less likely to suffer recurring clots if they take low dose aspirin.
“The results of this study suggest the simple, inexpensive treatment of low-dose aspirin could prevent thousands of patients from experiencing recurrent clots each year and may make substantial healthcare savings in Australia and worldwide,” said Professor John Simes, Director of the NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre at the University of Sydney and chair of the study. “These results suggest that aspirin prevents about one third of recurrent blood clot events.”
Over 822 participants from five countries were involved in the ASPIRE study. The participants had previously suffered deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism that occurred for no particular reason, called ‘unprovoked VTE’ (venous thromboembolism).
Dr Tim Brighton, from Prince of Wales Hospital and principal investigator of the study said that many patients discontinue warfarin therapy after six or twelve months of treatment due to the inconvenience of regular blood tests and the increased risks of serious bleeding.
“Aspirin reduced the risk of important blood clotting events including recurrent VTE, myocardial infarction, stroke or cardiovascular disease,” Brighton said. “We now have clear evidence that aspirin is of benefit for patients who are unable or do not wish to continue warfarin in the long-term.”Do you have an idea for a story?
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