Taking Aspirin Linked to Increased Risk of Heart Failure

Taking aspirin is linked to a 26% greater risk of heart failure, according to new research. Smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease are some of the additional variables linked to it.

The results of this study were published in the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Heart Failure Journal. “This is the first study to show that people who use aspirin who have at least one risk factor for heart failure are more likely to get the condition than people who don’t,” said study author Dr. Blerim Mujaj of the University of Freiburg in Germany.

“While the findings need to be confirmed,” Mujaj continued, “they do suggest that the potential link between aspirin and heart failure has to be clarified.”

The impact of aspirin on heart failure is debatable. The goal of this study was to see how it relates to heart failure incidence in those with and without heart disease, as well as to see if taking the medicine is linked to a new heart failure diagnosis in those who are at risk.

The research included 30,827 people at risk of heart failure who were enrolled in the HOMAGE study in Western Europe and the United States.

Smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease were all classified as “at-risk.” At the start of the study, all of the participants were over 40 years old and had no signs of heart failure. At the time of enrollment, individuals’ aspirin consumption was recorded, and they were divided into two groups: users and non-users. Participants were tracked for the first time they developed fatal or non-fatal heart failure that necessitated hospitalization. The average age of the participants was 67, with 34% of them being female.

At the start of the study, 7,698 people (or 25%) were using aspirin. Over the course of the 5.3-year follow-up, 1,330 people suffered heart failure. After controlling for sex, age, BMI, smoking, alcohol use, blood pressure, heart rate, blood cholesterol, creatinine, hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and treatment with renin-angiotensin-aldosterone-system inhibitors, calcium channel blockers, diuretics, beta-blockers, and lipid-lowering drugs, the researchers looked at the link between aspirin use and incident heart failure.

Taking aspirin was linked to a 26% increased chance of a new heart failure diagnosis on its own. The researchers repeated the analysis after matching aspirin users and non-users for heart failure risk variables to ensure that the findings were consistent. Aspirin was linked to a 26% increased risk of a new heart failure diagnosis in this matched analysis. After removing participants with a history of cardiovascular illness, the study was performed to double-check the results. Aspirin consumption was linked to a 27% increased incidence of acute heart failure in 22,690 participants (74% of whom were free of cardiovascular disease).

According to Dr. Mujaj, “This was the first comprehensive study to look into the link between aspirin use and heart failure in those who had or didn’t have heart disease and at least one risk factor. Aspirin is widely used; one out of every four patients in our study took it. Aspirin use was linked to incident heart failure in this cohort, regardless of other risk factors.”

He ended by saying, “To confirm these findings, large global randomized trials in adults at risk of heart failure are required. Until then, our findings indicate that aspirin should be used with caution in people who have heart failure or who have risk factors for it.”

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