Another Top Drug, Aspirin, No Longer Recommended For Heart Attack Prevention

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A dose of 75 to 100 mg daily is recommended for those who previously had a cardiovascular episode or those diagnosed with the disease.

According to the guideline, any effort to prevent a first instance of cardiovascular disease (called primary prevention) should ideally start with a thorough assessment of one's risk - that is, estimating how likely someone is to develop blockages in their arteries and have a heart attack or stroke or die as a result.

New guidelines released Sunday recommend that a daily aspirin helps to prevent heart attacks or strokes for older healthy adults, mainly those over 70 years of age. "Ultimately, we must individualize treatment for each patient, based on their individual situation".

Looking for more heart-healthy advice? Strive for at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking and swimming, the guidelines say.

But for people at low to average risk of heart disease, a healthy lifestyle is by far the best path to living a long, healthy life.

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The guidelines stress that statins - along with lifestyle changes such as a heart-healthy diet, regular exercise, weight loss and avoiding smoking or vaping tobacco - should be used to prevent heart disease in anyone with LDL levels of more than 190 milligrams per deciliter.

According to the new guidelines, all of the steps listed above can help you stick to another recommended goal: maintaining a healthy weight.

The AHA and ACC say that the most up-to-date research shows that even at a low dose (typically 81 milligrams), the odds for risky bleeding that comes with daily aspirin use now outweighs any benefit. For people who are inactive, some activity is better than none and small 10-minute bursts of activity throughout the day can add up for those with hectic schedules.

Experts say that adults don't need to take the daily aspirin anymore because it is much easier to directly treat the risk factors for heart attacks and strokes such as hypertension, diabetes and high cholesterol. He stressed that optimizing lifestyle habits and controlling blood pressure and cholesterol are more important than taking aspirin.

The 2019 ACC/AHA Guideline on the Primary Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease will simultaneously publish in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association's journal Circulation.

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