Aspirin can reduce the risk of recurrence of venous
thromboembolism in patients undergoing anticoagulant therapy.
Dr. Cecilia Becattini
et al at the University of Perugia, Italy, conducted a randomized,
placebo-controlled study that was published in New England Journal of Medicine
2012. The study focused on highlighting the role of aspirin in reducing the
risk of recurrence of venous thromboembolism.
volunteers were aged above 18 years and had taken vitamin K antagonist for 6 to
During the study,
aspirin was administered to patients taking oral anticoagulant treatment. They
showed 42 percent decrease in the recurrence rate as compared to those on
It was found that
venous thromboembolism recurred in 28 out of 205 patients while 43 out of 197
placebo receiving patients reported of thromboembolism.
conditions like thrombophilia were not taken for study purposes.
Aspirin was not
involved in increasing the rate of major bleeding compared with placebo.
Past researches have
revealed that after stoppage of oral anticoagulant therapy, venous
thromboembolism has high risk of recurrence. This recent study has shown the
effectiveness of aspirin in checking the recurrence of thromboembolism.
Dr. Richard C. Becker
mentioned, "On the basis of the available evidence, patients with
unprovoked venous thromboembolism who are at low to moderate risk for bleeding
are expected to derive the greatest overall benefit from extending
Venous thrombi include
both pulmonary thrombi and deep-vein thrombi and consist of platelets, layers
of fibrin, leukocytes, and red blood cells. They usually occur in stationary
patients having decreased oxygen tension.
Aspirin is the best
option for the management of venous thromboembolism. Some other options are
oral factor Xa inhibitor rivaroxaban (Bayer, Xarelto) and the oral thrombin
inhibitor dabigatran (Pradaxa, Boehringer Ingelheim).
The experts explained
that low density warfarin is also effective in reducing the recurrence risk by
64 percent as compared to placebo.
It was concluded that
aspirin was effective in preventing the recurrence of venous thromboembolism
without any associated risk of bleeding.
Aspirin for Preventing the Recurrence of Venous
Thromboembolism; Cecilia Becattini et al; N Engl J Med 2012; 366:1959-1967