Millions of people across the world are regularly taking ‘low dose’ (typically 81 milligrams) aspirin in an attempt to ward off heart attacks, strokes and other generally heart related illness. Yet a trio of studies recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine suggest that this over the counter consumption will not improve the chance of ‘disability-free survival’ and side-effects will increase the risk of other illnesses related to internal bleeding.
The primary study was a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial where half of the 19,114 participants took 100mg of aspirin a day and the other half were administered a placebo. The trial, run by the University of Monash Australia, used Australian and US citizens with a median age of 74 and all participants were deemed healthy at the time of enrolment.
After an average of 4.7 years observation, there was observed to be little difference between the two groups in the contraction of cardiovascular events – with 448 events in the aspirin group compared to 474 in the placebo group.
In-line with the known side-effects, chances of internal bleeding increased with 3.8% of those on the drug having a serious medical condition, such as stroke and gastrointestinal bleeding, compared to 2.7% on placebo.
The second study went further to suggest that aspirin will significantly increase the chance of a major haemorrhage, mainly in the form of upper gastrointestinal and intracranial bleeding, whilst a third study showed a mild increase in the chance of death, with 5.9% chance in the aspirin group compared to 5.2% in the placebo. This finding, however, is considered surprising and is likely to undergo further review.
The method used in this trial should be of interest to Biomedical Science applicants and can lead to questions about ways to improve or modify future research. Medicine applicants can consider the impact this study would have on patient advice and what, if any, influence doctors can have on over the counter use of medication.
- Are my grades good enough for Oxbridge? Grades are an area of much misunderstanding when it comes... Read more >
- Personal statement: our tips in the Independent Here are 3 quick tips every hopeful should consider before... Read more >
- College selection checklist Your college at Oxford or Cambridge is where you will... Read more >
- Philosophy Reading List If you are interested in Philosophy, there are several options... Read more >
- COPA & International Deadlines Most deadlines are the same for all those applying to... Read more >
- Download a Medicine Personal Statement Read our sample Medicine personal statement for application tips. Read more >
- Download an Economics Personal Statement 2 “Beyond this essential interest in the subject, I find that... Read more >
- TSA Oxford mini mock & answers Thinking is very important to Oxford, so they’ve devised an... Read more >
- Maths Puzzle: The Age of Census A census-taker knocks on a door, and asks the woman... Read more >
- Human Social and Political Science (HSPS) Reading List If you are applying for HSPS at Cambridge, it is... Read more >
- MLAT mini mock paper & answers The MLAT or Modern Languages Test is required by Oxford... Read more >
- Oxford and Cambridge International Grade Requirements If you’re applying to Cambridge or Oxford but you’ve not... Read more >
- Oxbridge: the global impact Concerning UK university admissions, UCAS have released some interesting stats.... Read more >
- Cambridge Language Test overview If you’re applying for Modern and Medieval Languages at Cambridge,... Read more >
- Law: answer like a pro Law is a notoriously competitive subject; this, along with the... Read more >
- January’s Top News Stories Read more about some of the biggest news stories to... Read more >
- 5 Easy Ways To Support Your Son Or Daughter Before Their Oxbridge Interviews The weeks before the Oxford and Cambridge interviews are a... Read more >
- Personal Statement Workbook Download A personal statement is a unique document which is all... Read more >
- Download a Biology Personal Statement “Assisting with the post mortem of a dairy cow during... Read more >
- Oxford and Cambridge Access Schemes Oxford and Cambridge aim to offer places to the best... Read more >
- History of Art Reading List History of Art at Oxford and Cambridge allows you to... Read more >
- Music Scholarships There is a wide range of musical scholarships available to... Read more >
- History Reading Lists The main challenge in the step up from school to... Read more >
- MAT overview If you’re applying for Maths or Computer Science at Oxford you will need... Read more >