Acetylsalicylic acid (commonly known as aspirin) is a painkillers, anti-inflammatuar, antipyretic and antiplatelet (blood thinners) drug. Aspirin shows this each of mechanisms as the dose-dependent effect. It shouldn’t be forgotten use of aspirin may result as treatment failure or it may lead to new health problems.  In particular more frequent doses of aspirin are used clinically as a treatment for the prevention of atherosclerosis. However, analgesic, antipyretic, and the effects of aspirin and can also be used for reducing inflammation, relief of mild to moderate pain and reduction of fever.

Aspirin is relatively old drug, we have acquired long-term experience on the use, it is one of the commonly used drug but this does not make it completely safe. Therefore, it can cause some side effects like any other drug. Aspirin’s side effects include some life threating conditions such as causing damage to the organ functions or making it easier to bleed. Even only this shows that we should be careful when using an aspirin.  Aspirin as an antipyretic should be avoided in children. Because use of aspirin during viral infections (including influenza, chicken pox, etc.) in children can cause serious illness such as liver and brain damage, and even a disease called Reye’s syndrome which can lead to death.

Aspirin’s the most common side effect occurs in the digestive tract. They consist of a wide range from bleeding in the digestive tract to the stomach burning and drilling. Therefore, in patients with disorders of the digestive tract or the digestive system such as gastritis (stomach inflammation), ulcers can worsen the situation if they use aspirin. In such cases strong pain relief medicines should be used according to doctor’s prescribed dose and duration. In addition, aspirin may cause a worsening of the disease causing narrowing of the respiratory tract, such as asthma.

As mentioned since aspirin is used as a treatment regimen for prevention of atherosclerosis; irrational use of aspirin results in a possible increase in bleeding tendency therefore people can get into a condition which is life-threatening. Also the use of aspirin is not suitable for patients with bleeding problems. In addition to these, in situations like angiography, tooth extractions, biopsies and surgeries patients shouldn’t use aspirin and if they do they must inform their physicians and comply with physicians’ recommendations. Medications called a blood thinners are not limited to aspirin. Many drugs used in treatment as blood thinners are available. Also patients should be careful about the use of other drugs under this group, just as the use of aspirin. Patients receiving this type of treatment certainly shouldn’t use aspirin on their own initiatives, if it’s necessary they are required to use under doctor control.

If aspirin use is necessary during pregnancy and lactation, it should be used under a doctor’s control.

In case you need to use painkillers, some of the things needs to be done to ensure the rational use of analgesics are summarized below;

  • We need to use aspirin under control of physicians. We should warn relatives and friends about aspirin when we think their immediate use is wrong and we need to make contact with the physician or pharmacist.
  • Diseases and symptoms that require the use of aspirin must be learned from doctors.
  • Why the treatment needs aspirin should be learned absolutely from physicians.
  • Other complimentary treatment information (weight management, exercise, smoking habits, herbal products and diet)  must also be learned from physicians. It’s important to keep in mind that some public information regarding this topics can be wrong.
  • When deciding aspirin to use and also for other medications, patient should help the physician by giving enough information about their medical history.
  • Patients should know the name of the medication
  • Patients should know why they’re using that specific medication, when the medication will start being effective, and how long these effects will continue
  • Patients should know how to use their medications (how many tablets a day, when should they be taken, on a full stomach or not or how many days it should be taken etc.)
  • Whether these medications have drug-drug interactions or drug-disease interactions or not
  • Side effects of medications
  • What to do when faced with a side effect
  • Patients should also know whether they need another checkup visit to clinic or not.

If the patient thinks that physician didn’t gave the necessary information, they should ask the questions they had in their mind to physician. Patients should not hesitate in this regard. Patients should also consulate with pharmacist on the topics mentioned above. If the patient thinks that physician didn’t gave the necessary information, they can also ask the questions they had in their mind to their pharmacists.

In conclusion, use of aspirin should be determined by physician according to the individual’s disease and the condition of disease, diet, other medications and other diseases. Aspirin should not be used without a prescription. During the use of such drugs pharmacist when faced with an unexpected situation patients should consult the doctors or pharmacists.

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