FILE - This Thursday, Aug. 23, 2018 file photo shows an arrangement of aspirin pills in New York. A new study suggests millions of people need to rethink their use of aspirin to prevent a heart attack. If you've already had a heart attack, doctors recommend taking a low-dose aspirin a day to prevent a second one. But if you don't yet have heart disease, doctors now advise routine aspirin can do more harm than good. (AP Photo/Patrick Sison, File)

Study: Millions should stop using aspirin for heart health

July 22, 2019 - 2:05 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — A new study suggests millions of people may need to rethink their use of aspirin to prevent a heart attack.

If you've already had one heart attack or stroke, doctors still recommend a low-dose aspirin a day to prevent a second one.

But if you don't yet have heart disease, the advice recently changed. Guidelines now rule out routine aspirin use for many otherwise healthy older adults and say it's only for certain younger people under doctor's orders.

Harvard researchers estimated how many people might be affected. They report that millions took aspirin without a doctor's recommendation as late as 2017. They urge patients to ask their doctors if the simple remedy is right for them.

The study was published Monday in Annals of Internal Medicine.

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