UPSTF: Benefits, Harms of Aspirin for Prevention of CVD, Cancer Vary by Age

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Recommended for some patients aged 50 to 59 years, but insufficient evidence for those aged younger than 50 or older than 70.

UPSTF: Benefits, Harms of Aspirin for Prevention of CVD, Cancer Vary by Age
UPSTF: Benefits, Harms of Aspirin for Prevention of CVD, Cancer Vary by Age

(HealthDay News) — The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has concluded that the benefits and harms of low-dose aspirin for prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cancer vary by patient age. 

These findings form the basis of a draft recommendation statement published by the USPSTF.

Researchers from the USPSTF reviewed the evidence relating to use of low-dose aspirin to prevent CVD and cancer. They then prepared recommendations that address different age groups.

For adults aged 50 to 59 years who have a 10% or greater 10-year CVD risk and are not at increased risk for bleeding, low-dose aspirin should be taken to prevent CVD and colorectal cancer (Grade B recommendation), according to the researchers. 

For individuals aged 60 to 69 years with a greater than 10% 10-year CVD risk, the decision to use low-dose aspirin should be an individual one (Grade C recommendation). 

For adults younger than 50 years and for those age 70 years and older, the current evidence was insufficient to weigh the balance of benefits and harms of aspirin use (Grade I statements). 

These findings form the basis of the draft recommendation statement, which will be available for comment until Oct. 12, 2015.

"Taking aspirin is easy, but deciding whether or not to take aspirin for prevention is complex," task force vice chair Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, PhD, MD, said in a statement.

Read the draft recommendation statement; the evidence review on aspirin for prevention of CVD; the evidence review on aspirin to prevent cancer; and the evidence review on the harms of aspirin.

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