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In Brief: Aspirin and stroke

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Aspirin and stroke: Findings from the decade-long Stroke Prevention in Atrial Fibrillation (SPAF) trial, published in the April 22/29 issue of the JAMA, identify patients with low risk of stroke who fare well by taking aspirin rather than warfarin to prevent stroke. The authors conclude that "patients with AF who have relatively low rates of ischemic stroke, particularly disabling stroke, during treatment with aspirin can be reliably identified." Coordinated by Robert Hart, MD, and David Sherman, MD, University of Texas Health Sciences Center at San Antonio, the study followed 892 low-risk atrial fibrillation patients taking 325 mg aspirin daily with the objective of identifying risk levels among the population subgroups. The study revealed annual risk rates in the group of primary events (2.2%), ischemic stroke (2%) and disabling ischemic stroke (.8%). Patients with a history of hypertension had a higher rate of primary events (3.6.%) than those without (1.1%)...
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