Heart Drugs News: February 2007 Archives

heartThe American Heart Association says nearly all US women are in danger of heart disease or stroke and should be more aggressive about lowering their risk.

The Dallas-based association says the steps women need to take include asking their doctors about daily aspirin use.

It's the first time guidelines have urged all women to consider aspirin for preventing strokes, although specialists warn that it can cause ulcers and dangerous bleeding.

The guidelines also advise daily exercise and less fat and declare vitamins C and E, beta-carotene and folic acid supplements worthless for preventing heart disease.

Heart surgery drug's safety questioned

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aprotinin (trasylol)CHICAGO - A drug widely used to prevent excessive bleeding during heart surgery appears to raise the risk of dying in the five years afterward by nearly 50 percent, an international study found.

The researchers said replacing the drug -- aprotinin, sold by Bayer AG under the brand name Trasylol -- with other, cheaper medications for a year would prevent 10,000 deaths worldwide over the next five years.

The findings were more bad news for Trasylol: The same scientists found the drug raised the risk of kidney failure, heart attacks and strokes in a study published last year. Most of the deaths in the new study were related to those problems.