Study examines aspirin and statin use among older Americans

An analysis published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society indicates that while adults aged 75 years and older do not benefit from taking aspirin to prevent cardiovascular disease, many do so on a regular basis. Also, although statins are known to help prevent heart problems in older adults who have experienced a cardiovascular event, many of these individuals do not take a statin.

The analysis included data on 11,392 U.S. adults aged 50 years and older who were surveyed from 2011 to 2018. Investigators found that more than half of participants took aspirin or a statin.

“Healthcare providers should inform their older patients about appropriate aspirin use so that they can avoid misuse of aspirin, which can be easily purchased over the counter. Ultimately, safer prescribing practice, patient education, and patient-oriented effectiveness research should be continually encouraged to reduce potential harms and improve cardiovascular health in older adults,” said lead author Greg Rhee, Ph.D., of the University of Connecticut School of Medicine.