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Aspirin Benefits

The American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHA) recommend the use of aspirin in lower dosages under a doctor's care for people who have experienced a variety of heart conditions. Aspirin isn't right for everyone so you should always check with your doctor before beginning an aspirin regimen. To help you start the discussion, here are some of the FDA-approved uses for aspirin.

During a Heart Attack

Chewing as little as one half (160 to 162.5 mg) of a regular-strength aspirin (325 mg) tablet during a suspected heart attack and continued use for 30 days thereafter reduces the risk of death by up to 23%. If taken during a suspected heart attack, aspirin can also lessen the damaging effects of the attack.
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Preventing Recurrent Heart Attack

Another use of aspirin is for the prevention of heart attacks in people who have already had a heart attack. Taken regularly, aspirin can reduce the risk of a second attack by 30%. The approved dosage for recurrent heart attack prevention is 75 to 325 mg.
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Preventing Heart Attacks in Patients with Angina

Angina, also known as chest pain, is one of the most common symptoms of heart disease. Angina is caused when blood flow to an area of the heart has been decreased. There are two type of angina: stable and unstable. Stable angina is when the pain occurs during exertion and times of emotional stress. Unstable angina occurs while at rest. Unstable angina may also be felt more frequently, be more severe and could lead to a heart attack. Millions of Americans are in this high-risk category.

An aspirin regimen could help reduce the risk of a first heart attack in patients with stable or unstable angina. In patients suffering from unstable angina, one study showed the risk for heart attack was reduced by 51%. The approved dosage for heart attack prevention in patients with angina is 75 to 325 mg.
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Preventing Recurrent Ischemic Stroke

Regular aspirin use under a doctor's care can help prevent recurrent ischemic stroke in people who already have suffered a first ischemic stroke or have had a transient ischemic attack (TIA or mini-stroke). As with heart attacks, aspirin lessens the damaging effects to the brain if a stroke does occur. The approved dosage for recurrent ischemic stroke prevention is 50 to 325 mg.

Aspirin is not appropriate for everyone, so be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen.
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