Aspirin Journals | Open Access Journals

Journal of Anesthesiology and Pain Research

ISSN: 2684-5997

Open Access

Aspirin Journals

Aspirin reduces the risk of heart attacks and strokes by preventing blood clots from forming on the surface of ruptured atherosclerotic plaques. Atherosclerotic plaques build up along the lining of blood vessels over many years in response to injury caused by high blood pressure, abnormal blood sugar levels, high blood cholesterol levels, and toxins contained in tobacco smoke. Platelets stick to ruptured atherosclerotic plaques to form blood clots that block blood flow and thereby reduce oxygen delivery to tissues. Clots that block blood flow to heart muscle cause heart attacks, and clots that block blood flow to the brain cause strokes. Aspirin's commonest side effect is upper abdominal pain resulting from gastric irritation. This side effect might be avoided by taking aspirin with food. Enteric-coated aspirin is popular but is more expensive than noncoated aspirin and has not been shown to reduce symptoms of gastric irritation. Aspirin causes gastrointestinal bleeding (an excess of up to 1 event for every 1000 patients treated for 1 year).4 Risk of gastric irritation and bleeding can be reduced by the use of a proton pump inhibitor (e.g., omeprazole) in combination with aspirin.

One to two percent of patients have an allergy to aspirin that can result in asthma or, rarely, life-threatening allergy (anaphylaxis). Allergic patients can undergo a desensitization procedure. After undergoing desensitization, patients should not miss any doses of aspirin because this may lead to recurrence of the allergy. Aspirin is a non-selective cyclo-oxygenase (COX) inhibitor. It blocks the production of thromboxane in platelets (by acetylation of COX in platelets) thereby inhibiting their aggregation, but it also blocks the synthesis of prostaglandins in the vascular wall that, in health, causes vasorelaxation, maintains renal function, and reduces adhesion of platelets to the vessel wall. Furthermore, aspirin may be beneficial for atherosclerosis not only because of its antiplatelet action, but also by showing a direct effect on the atheroma plaque. Indeed, Redondo et al. have undoubtedly demonstrated that aspirin increases the stability of the atheroma plaque (or significantly inhibits plaque growth), this mediated by an increase in TGF-β secretion. These properties of aspirin have consequently brought to explore the benefits of this drug in CVD prevention. However, the use of aspirin, especially in the long term, is not without some harmful effects that can even become fatal.

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