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A Journal on Internal Medicine

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Minerva Medica 2010 August;101(4):205-14

language: Italian

Aspirin for the prevention of cardiovascular morbidity

Sanchez-Ross M., Waller A. H., Maher J., Klapholz M., Haider B., Kaluski E.

University Hospital and New Jersey Medical School (UMDNJ), Newark, NJ, USA


Aspirin (ASA) use for secondary prevention in patients with cardiovascular (CV) disease is well established through its beneficial effects on the reduction of myocardial infarction, ischemic stroke and CV mortality. This beneficial effect of ASA seems to consistently outweigh the risk in most patient subsets. Current guidelines endorse ASA for primary prevention of CV events in adults who are at moderate-high risk of CV morbidity. Recent emerging data on the efficacy and safety of ASA conflicts with former randomized clinical trials and raises concerns regarding the validity of these recommendations. The following manuscript describes the data emerging from contemporary trials regarding the efficacy and safety of ASA in various patient subsets. The authors propose certain strategies to enhance safety and efficacy in order to augment the beneficial effects of ASA along with other modalities of primary prevention for suitable candidates. When contemplating ASA prescription for primary prevention of CV events, physicians should carefully weigh the potential benefits of risk reduction versus likelihood of harm, mostly related to bleeding complications.

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