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Low-dose aspirin -- anyone else's oncologist recommend it?

TraciInLA's picture
TraciInLA
Posts: 1839
Joined: Jul 2009

I had my regular 3-month checkup with my oncologist last week, and everything looks good (yay!).

He brought up some recent research on patients taking low-dose/baby (81 mg.) aspirin for cardiac issues, which found that it also seemed to reduce their risk for breast and colon cancers. He feels the research is strong enough to recommend that his breast cancer patients who can tolerate aspirin (and don't have any other medical conditions that would make taking aspirin a bad idea) take one low-dose aspirin a day.

So -- yippee -- I've added another pill to my morning "ritual." I haven't taken aspirin since I was a child, and I've always had a sensitive stomach, so I bought the coated ones, which are supposed to be gentler on your stomach. And I take all my pills with breakfast, so never on an empty stomach.

Anyone else's oncologist recommend this for you? Anyone have any problems with it, or suggestions for me? Do the coated ones really help with stomach issues, or is that just a bunch of marketing? What convinced me to at least give it a try is the fact that my oncologist brought this up himself during my visit, and really felt that the research in this area is compelling.

Traci

Clementine_P's picture
Clementine_P
Posts: 364
Joined: Feb 2011

Hi Traci,

My oncologist has had me taking it for the last 2 years (since I finished chemo) based on the study you mentioned and the fact that Tamoxifen can cause clotting. So a double benefit. I have had no trouble with it at all. He told me to buy the coated kind and I have been using that (Ecotrin). I take it before I go to bed with my Tamoxifen. Other than bruising a bit easier than I used to, I can say that I have experienced no side effects at all.

Best,
Clementine

TraciInLA's picture
TraciInLA
Posts: 1839
Joined: Jul 2009

You always have good input for me!

I'm also on Tamoxifen, and hadn't even thought about the side benefit of helping with the clotting risk. I'm not at high risk for any bleeding or clotting issues, but a little extra insurance is a good thing!

I'm also glad to hear that your oncologist recommended the coated ones. I don't think I've ever purchased aspirin for myself, and I was standing in the pain reliever section of the drugstore after my appointment feeling a little bit like a guy standing in the feminine products aisle! :-)

Traci

Clementine_P's picture
Clementine_P
Posts: 364
Joined: Feb 2011

LOL@a guy standing in the feminine products aisle!

They told me exactly what to buy (brand, dose), so I just went to the store and followed orders. No thinking required. :)

Clementine

CypressCynthia's picture
CypressCynthia
Posts: 3956
Joined: Oct 2009

I have been on low dose aspirin since I had a small heart attack in 2008.

I had no risk factors when I had the heart attack--other than being a cancer patient. My cardiologist thinks the heart attack was probably due to a disturbance in clotting factors as a result of having undiagnosed metastasis at the time. However, our treatments, although absolutely necessary for our survival, can make us higher risk for heart disease. It may never happen to you, but be aware.

I would probably never have suspected a possible heart attack (not overweight, low blood pressure, no family history) except I had read something about longterm survivors being higher risk. Knowledge was power, because I am fine because I caught and treated it early.

Researchers have a "Multiple Hit Hypothesis" which tries to explain our greater risk for heart disease. The causes can be the cancer itself, as well as various treatments:

http://content.onlinejacc.org/article.aspx?articleid=1138541

So the aspirin might be a win-win for cancer survivors by being cardioprotective and may also help reduce cancer risk. Ask your onc!

Pinky68's picture
Pinky68
Posts: 206
Joined: Jul 2012

If it's ok to ask, what were your symptoms of the small heart attack? Did it come on suddenly and rushed to the hospital?

Did you have left arm or jaw pain? If you don't mind, I'd really like to hear your story on this....Maybe your story about the symptoms and what they did for you in the hospital could help me better understand what to recognize.....And you don't have to answer this last question..What was your age? You look super young!!

Don't know why, but the fear of a heart attack has bothered me since my early 20's..kinda of silly I know!

TY Bunches,
Joyce

lynn1950's picture
lynn1950
Posts: 2573
Joined: Jun 2008

Well, hurray for aspirin and HURRAY for a good checkup! xoxoxoxo

Dot53
Posts: 236
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi Tracy,

My oncologist recommended the same thing at my last visit... He pretty much said the same thing yours did so I have been taking one daily...

Best,
Dot

punkinpie's picture
punkinpie
Posts: 16
Joined: Jul 2012

My oncologist also recommended the low dose aspirin. I have the chewable kind as my husband and I both take it now. It makes me feel a bit better about taking Tamoxifan.

BlownAway60's picture
BlownAway60
Posts: 833
Joined: Nov 2009

I have been taking a low dose aspirin for a while. Even before my dx and my onc did mention that it was a good thing.

Hugs

Donna

Frankie Shannon
Posts: 457
Joined: Oct 2011

Hi Traci i have been on low dose aspirin for a few years now ,the ones i take are the baby chewable ones and have no problems with them they are 81mg,that way i don't feel like i am taking another pill as your chewing it.
Hugs Frankie

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