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Top 10 Ways to Avoid a Heart Attack

        Health | Heart

Heart Tip 8: Aspirin

Some 911 dispatchers will recommend an aspirin to heart attack victims.
Some 911 dispatchers will recommend an aspirin to heart attack victims.
Daryl Solomon/Getty Images

In 1998, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advised people that have already had a heart attack to begin taking an aspirin a day to help prevent another one. The popular pain reliever, in low doses, works to help prevent clotting by thinning the blood. If your blood isn't clotting, you're less likely to have a heart attack. The American Heart Association (AHA) also suggests a daily dose of aspirin to help prevent a first and second heart attack.

­However, many people haven't heeded the warning about taking too much aspirin, and nearly 250,000 adults are admitted to the hospital each year for internal bleeding as a result. The FDA and the AHA recommend that adults stick to the minimum daily dose, which is only 75 to 81 milligrams. This is the equivalent of a single baby aspirin. When you consider that a standard full dose of aspirin comes in at 325 milligrams, people who pop one of those per day are doing more harm than good. Before you start an aspirin regimen, you should consult your doctor. The requirements are different for men and women and not everyone is a good candidate for aspirin therapy. You also shouldn't drink alcohol if you're on a daily aspirin dose because it can increase your chances for internal bleeding.


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