May 11, 2022
Update On Heart Disease Prevention Recommendations

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force changes view on aspirin use,

New evidence has prompted the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force to reverse its policies on the use of aspirin for heart disease prevention. The task force has determined that the risks of daily aspirin usage after age 60, in people without a history of cardiovascular disease (CVD), outweigh the benefits. It has also lowered the age that it advises aspirin initiation in at-risk adults from 50 to 40.

The new recommendations are based on the latest research which has shown that while aspirin reduces the likelihood of nonfatal myocardial infarction and stroke in these vulnerable populations, It increases the risk of dangerous bleeding events such as gastrointestinal bleeding, intracranial hemorrhage and hemorrhagic stroke.

Beginning aspirin therapy at a younger age appears to have greater lifetime benefits than starting later in life, when bleeding risk increases. The task force cautions that the decision to begin aspirin therapy should be determined by patients and clinicians to determine if it is the right call and emphasizes that these new recommendations apply to patients with no history or signs of CVD or other conditions where aspirin may be indicated.

Aspirin has been used to prevent CVD for more than 70 years and should not be discounted as an effective preventative. The American College of Cardiology still recommends low dose aspirin for at-risk adults aged 40 to 70, if they are not at risk for bleeding. It’s simply a matter of weighing the risks and the benefits. “SpecialtyRx stays abreast of pharmaceutical therapy recommendations so we can advise our clients based on the latest research and data available,’ stated Hema Shaddarshanam, Pharmacist In Charge at SpecialtyRx.