Researchers: Aspirin works as well as warfarin for heart failure
New York, NY, United States (AHN) – Researchers say that plain old cheap aspirin is just as effective as the more expensive drug frequently prescribed for heart failure patients with a normal heart rhythm.
Scientists at Columbia University Medical Center in New York coordinated the international study of, 2,305 patients in their 60s. The patients were randomly assigned to receive either warfarin or 325 mg of aspirin daily. Patients were then followed up after an average of six years.
Warfarin is a blood thinner that is also used as a rat poison. Using it for heart patients requires careful monitoring because if their blood is thinned too much it can result in bleeding. Moreover, warfarin also interacts with many other drugs, which can cause problems. Therefore, aspirin is safer to use to begin with.
U.S. researchers said they concluded that many patients with heart failure who do not have other problems, such as narrowing arteries or heart rhythm disturbances, were better off with aspirin.
Heart failure makes it difficult for the heart to pump blood around the body, making it difficult for patients to function. Heart failure affects 6 million people in the United States and 900,000 people in the United Kingdom.
Results of the study were published in the New England Journal of Medicine.