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Aspirin Therapy: Right for Your Heart?

Daily aspirin helps many, but age, gender, and heart disease risks play a part. Is it right for you?

Aspirin: Different Benefits for Men and Women continued...

In general, for healthy women under 65, an aspirin isn't recommended, says Wenger. Again, it's best to talk to your doctor.

Most of all, it's important to recognize that taking aspirin doesn't reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease nearly as much as good old-fashioned measures like losing weight, exercising, quitting smoking, and controlling blood pressure and cholesterol. These measures can lower the risk of serious disease by up to 80% according to some studies -- leaving aspirin in the dust.

Yet aspirin is a valuable tool for people who want to do everything they can to prevent heart attacks and stroke. After seeing her doctor, Sandra Rose decided she was one of them. She decided to stay on her aspirin, even though her cardiovascular risk was already low. "I wanted to get it even lower," she said, despite the risk of bleeding. Knowing the benefits, and the risks, let her make an informed choice.

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