November 30, 2016

Is Aspirin Part of Your Diabetes Regimen?

Diabetes increases your risk of heart attack and clot-related stroke (cardiovascular events). Peripheral artery disease — a condition in which your arteries narrow, reducing blood flow to your arms and legs — also increases your risk of cardiovascular events.

Aspirin interferes with your blood's ability to clot. Because diabetes increases your risk of cardiovascular events, daily aspirin therapy typically has been recommended as part of a diabetes management plan. Research has shown that aspirin therapy is effective at reducing the risk of heart attack and clot-related strokes if you've had a previous cardiovascular event.

Aspirin therapy also appears to reduce these risks if you're experiencing symptoms of peripheral artery disease — such as leg cramping, numbness or weakness.

What's not clear is whether aspirin lowers the risk of a cardiovascular event if you haven't experienced one before and you aren't experiencing symptoms of peripheral artery disease. More study is needed on the potential benefits and risks of aspirin therapy in these people. Aspirin therapy does have potential side effects, such as bleeding ulcers and stroke caused by a leaking or burst blood vessel (hemorrhagic stroke).

If you have diabetes, peripheral artery disease or both, ask your doctor about daily aspirin therapy, including which strength of aspirin would be best for you.

The doctors on my team are happy with the 81 mg aspirin and the time I ran out and used 325 mg, two of the doctors very clearly told me to get back on the 81 mg aspirin and stay there. They were also concerned about aspirin causing tumors or ulcers in my stomach. Then when I was diagnosed with GERD (Gastroesophageal reflux disease), two doctors were concerned about even the 81 mg aspirin I was taking. When the GERD improved, they relaxed and told me not to take any aspirin more than 81 mg.

There are times when doctors recommend stopping the aspirin, especially before an operation and at certain other times. They want the non-clotting aspect of aspirin to be out of the system before the operation. The period of time before an operation varies among doctors between seven to ten days.

No comments: