Aspirin

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Does anyone take only aspirins for their afib instead of a blood thinner ? I am really scared to start taking blood thinners . I'd rather just take a aspirin a day . Would it be safe to take just aspirin ?

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  • Posted

    Yes, I'm only on 100 mg aspirin every second day because my CHA2DS-VASc Stroke-Risk score is 1 and I'm a fit 67-years-old.  I made this decision a couple of years ago after much internet research.

    Aspirin reduces stroke risk almost half as much as NOACs, while both increase bleeding risk.  Aspirin, however, has a number of other benefits, including reduced risk of common cancers.  Beyond 75-years-old, aspirin is much less attractive than NOACs. 

    A recent study, https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/03/170317131550.htm, found blood thinners have little benefit for low-risk atrial fibrillation patients.  In the US, I understand that NOACs are not usuallly prescribed for a CHA2DS-VASc of 1 or less.

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    • Posted

      I just got back from seeing my cardiologist, he has me on a 24 hour holter monitor. He told me that I was at low risk for a stroke and said I could continue taking a aspirin a day . Funny thing though I just now converted back to normal sinus rhythm, which is good . Thank goodness.
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    • Posted

      Here's the link to figure out your score. The higher the score, the more risk of a stroke when you have aFib:

      Go to the bottom of the page for "Risk Assessment." You know, you are already blessed to have reached your age. We have no such longevity in my family!

      Let us know your score. Take care!

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  • Posted

    Age has nothing to do with blood thinners. Having AF puts you at an increased risk of stroke. Aspirin is found not to prevent stroke.

    The NOACS ( new blood thinners) help to prevent stroke by keeping your blood thin.

    They also have nasty possible side effects, they can cause fatal bleeding,so we with AF are between a rock and a hard place.

    It can depend on how often and for how long you get episodes of AFib.

    i get them 2-3times a month, sometimes more sometimes less. Extremely fast and chaotic heart rate, dizzy, chest pain, nausea, fainting, short of breath. Last from 4 to 12 hours.

    I'm taking the blood thinner rather than risk a stroke.

    Its complicated and you need to have a talk with a competent Cardio who know his business and is honest about the medication and then make up your own mind. Good luck.

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  • Posted

    mary 1213 -  I used to take aspirin until I was diagnosed with AF - I was then taken off aspirin and given Xarelto which is a blood thinner.  I had serious isssues with this and was put on warfarin just after Christmas 2016 -  I asked why I couldn't stay on Aspirin alone, and was told - once AF is diagnosed the risk of stroke become more likely.  Blood thinner's such as Xarelto (riveraxaban), Apixiban, and Warfarin help keep the blood flowing freely - when AF occurs it means the chambers are not opening and closing correctly, therefore there is a possibility of a blood clot forming that can build up and move toward the brain, thereby causing a stroke.   By taking the thinner, as opposed to aspirin any clot newly formed will be washed away efficiently.   Hope this helps

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  • Posted

    The way I see aspirin for AF is less pessimistic so long as you're fit, age is your sole risk factor, and your long-term diet is such that the risk of clots forming in the atria is low.

    Naturally, research funded by NOACs will disparage aspirin, which is still recommended to prevent secondary strokes. NOACS are far from perfect themselves. I'm 68 and on aspirin alone despite stroke in the family tree.

    Life involves balancing risk.

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    • Posted

      Warfarin is still the best but people don't want the constant testing and dietary restrictions. No one funds warfarin as it only costs pennies.

      Clots form in the left atrial appendage when the heart is out of control with AF and your diet  will do little to stop them.

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    • Posted

      Derek,  since taking Wararin, I have met several people who say the same as you about the constant blood tests and diet.   The only thing I was told not to have was Cranberries or Cranberry juice.   My next door neighbour has a list as long as her arm, I spoke to the Warfarin Consultant about this, thinking I was getting it wrong, she assured me saying, 'Some Medical Practices do not change their instructions when new information becomes available, therefore vital information is not passed on to patients.'   I told my neighour this and she spoke to her doctor about it, sure enough her doctor had missed this vital information, blaming the practice nurse for not updating the computer system - my neighbour now only omits cranberries and cranberry juice from her diet.

      Other people have also been in touch with their doctors and had their information amended.   As for contstant testing, once my blood reading was within the safe box which took about one month, I now only have to have a further test every six months or whenever I am prescribed antibiotics.   You are right when you say clots form in the atrial appendage when the heart is out of control with AF, diet does little to stop this, but warfarin will wash away the clots and disperse them.   Many people are still not aware Warfarin, Apixaban and Riveraxiban/Xarelto are NOT blood thinners but are anticoagulants which means they stop the clots forming.  I was diagnosed with AF 31/8/16 and had never heard of it before - I don't get the flutterings in my heart area,  get the flutterings and palpitations in my tummy, but all other symptoms are the same.

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    • Posted

      Warfarin is the best if INR happens to remain stable, otherwise it's life threatening.  Besides the dearth of green leafy in the diet is worrying. 

      As for clotting in the atria, the CHA2DS2-VASc poorly discriminates between patients with a risk of 1 or less.  For instance, metabolic syndrome and lifestyle risk factors can vary hugely.  In the US, all these patients are currently left on aspirin!

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