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Aspirin cuts stroke risk in women, not men

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DURHAM, N.C., Nov 15, 2005 (UPI via COMTEX) -- Duke University scientists they've found aspirin can significantly reduce the risk of stroke in women, but has little protective effect in men.

Duke Medical Center researchers, led by Dr. Jeffery Berger, conducted a meta-analysis of more than 95,000 patients and also found aspirin increases the risk of bleeding, or hemorrhagic, strokes in men with no effect on women.

For the more common form of stroke known as ischemic stroke -- in which blood flow to a portion of brain is blocked -- the researchers found aspirin had no effect on men, but reduced the incidence in women.

The seemingly conflicting results of the study, along with the results of other studies, should lead to more intensive research into the gender differences concerning cerebrovascular disease and drugs use to prevent it, the researchers said.

However, they emphasized both healthy men and women who can tolerate aspirin should continue taking it, since their study demonstrated aspirin is effective in preventing strokes in women, and is known to reduce heart attacks in men.

Berger presented the results of the analysis in Dallas at this week's annual Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association.


Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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