Anyone with aspirin sensitivity, meaning an allergy to aspirin, or anyone with significant peptic ulcer disease, gastrointestinal bleeding, or chronic reflux disease should use caution before taking aspirin and should consult their physician. Also, patients with significant asthma should consult their physician prior to taking aspirin because aspirin can flare up asthma.

In general, any adult who has any type of heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, or lipid disorder probably would benefit from taking a low dose, 81mg aspirin. Many studies support decreased cardiovascular risk from a low dose aspirin. Again, everyone should consult his or her physician before taking any medication. Some studies suggest that any adult over age 40 would probably benefit from a low dose, 81mg aspirin per day. This presents more benefit than risk assuming there are none of the above-mentioned problems.

Dr. Brad Collins is an internist at East Jefferson General Hospital. To make an appointment with Dr. Collins or another physician at EJGH, please contact HealthFinder at 504.456.5000.