The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has questioned the efficacy of aspirin in preventing first heart attack or stroke in people who have never had cardiovascular problems.
Last week, the FDA has turned down the plea of German drugmaker Bayer AG to change the labeling on packages in order to market aspirin’s value in preventing heart attacks in people who have never had cardiovascular disease.
FDA deputy director for clinical science Dr. Robert Temple said in an agency “consumer update”, “People should use daily aspirin therapy only after talking to a healthcare professional who can assess the benefits and risks.”
“Since the 1990s, clinical data have shown that in people who have experienced a heart attack, stroke or who have a disease of the blood vessels in the heart, a daily low dose of aspirin can help prevent a re-occurrence,” Temple said in a statement on the FDA website.
Health experts said, aspirin therapy helps in reducing the clumping action of the platelets which may help in preventing heart attack. However, they warn that there may be serious side effects from daily use of aspirin, including internal bleeding.
Aspirin is widely used by patients for primary prevention of heart related issues. Many cardiologists and physicians recommend the drug for some of their patients.
The American Heart Association currently supports the use of aspirin for primary prevention when recommended by a physician in high risk patients.