Taking aspirin to reduce blood-clotting is “as safe and just as effective as warfarin”, The Daily Telegraph has today reported. Both drugs have long been used to prevent potentially dangerous blood clots, but there is much debate over which is better for patients. Unfortunately, both can cause unpleasant side effects, such as major internal bleeds.
The news is based on a well-designed trial looking at aspirin and warfarin that compared their safety and effectiveness when treating patients who had heart failure but a normal heartbeat. Heart failure occurs when the heart can't pump enough blood around the body to meet its needs, leading to tiredness, shortness of breath and fluid retention. Anti-clotting medications such as aspirin or warfarin aren't always part of the standard medical treatment of heart failure, but they may be judged suitable for people who are also at increased risk of blood clots due to related problems such as cardiovascular disease.