Study: Daily aspirin dose may need occasional boost
February 2, 1998
Web posted at: 11:13 p.m. EST (0413 GMT)
(CNN) -- Doctors have long recommended a low daily dose of aspirin for people who have had heart attacks or strokes or are at high risk for those maladies.
But new research shows that the standard dose may occasionally need to be boosted in order to make the treatment more effective.
The American Heart Association recommends a daily dose of between 75 and 325 milligrams a day. The low end of that range is equivalent to about 1/4 of a standard aspirin tablet; the high end is one tablet.
Aspirin inhibits the function of blood platelets, preventing them from clumping and blocking blood vessels.
But a new study, published in an American Heart Association journal, suggests that in some patients, the anti-clumping effect can wear off after about two weeks, requiring a "boost" of a higher dose of aspirin to restore it.
However, this does not apply to everyone, because in many people the anti-clumping effect works just fine with low doses of aspirin.
Despite the results of the study, which looked at 62 patients, the heart association has not changed its recommendations on aspirin.
Researchers say that eventually, individuals will be able to get a blood test to determine their optimal dose of aspirin.
Medical Correspondent Dr. Steve Salvatore contributed to this report.