Daily Low-Dose Aspirin Shown to Have No Effect on Healthy Life Span in Seniors, Study Shows

A recent clinical trial supported by the National Health Institute (NIH) found that the daily low-dose use of the common anti-inflammatory drug, aspirin, did not prolong healthy and independent living—specifically, a life free of dementia or persistent physical disability. These findings, collected in a clinical trial from ASPirin in Reducing Events in the Elderly (ASPREE), were published online on September 16th, 2018 in three papers in The New England Journal of Medicine. Here, the aging-in-place professionals at Avila Home Care provide an overview of the clinical trial data.

 Overview of Aspirin

Aspirin, also called acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), is a widely used pain-relief medication used to treat fever and minor aches and pains. It is non-steroidal and often used as an anti-inflammatory medication and blood-thinner. It was previously believed that people with a higher risk of blood clots, heart attacks, stroke or cardiovascular disease can reduce these risks by taking a low dosage of aspirin long-term.

 Overview of the Clinical Study

ASPREE is an international, double-blind, placebo-controlled and randomized project that aimed to deduce whether the common anti-inflammatory drug, aspirin, prolonged healthy living in people without previous cardiovascular events. The study began in 2010 and included 19,114 people, ages 65 to 70 depending on race and ethnicity, from Australia and the United States. In order to be enrolled in the study, participants could not have dementia or a physical disability and had to be free of any medical conditions requiring aspirin usage.

Overview of Clinical Trial Data and Conclusion

The results of the conducted trial, reported in September 2018, showed that a daily, low-dose aspirin treatment of 100 mg per day did not affect human survival free of dementia or physical disability. In fact, the group taking daily aspirin had a higher risk of death compared to the placebo group with 5.9% of participants taking aspirin and 5.2% of participants taking a placebo experiencing death. However, the study notes that this finding should be interpreted with caution, as the cause of these deaths primarily had to do with cancer and the discrepancies between the death rates of the two groups could be due to chance.

Additionally, the study found that, among the group taking aspirin, 90.3% of people were alive at the end of the trial without persistent physical disability or dementia compared to 90.5% of people taking the placebo. In other words, the rates of physical disability between those taking the placebo and those taking aspirin were extremely similar, and the rates of dementia between the two groups were almost identical, thereby showing that a daily, low dosage of aspirin has no drastic effects on longevity.

 Learn More From Our Aging-In-Place Experts at Avila Home Care

 Here at Avila Home Care, our aging-in-place experts prioritize your overall health and well-being. Therefore, we believe that it is important to stay informed about your health and about clinical trial findings on common medications that are often used to treat a variety of ailments. Our caretakers are available to help clients remember to take their prescribed daily medication, visit pharmacies and consult with their doctors on any treatments they may need. Our caretakers are also here to assist those with Alzheimer’s or dementia. For more information about how our dedicated caregivers can help you, contact the aging in place professionals at Avila Home Care today!

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