FM/CFS/ME RESOURCES - Drug Database - Aspirin


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Drug Database - Aspirin

Generic Name: aspirin (AS-pir-in)

Brand Names: Examples Include: Aspiritab® and Bayer®

Classification: Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)

Issue Date: 1899

Aspirin is used for treating pain including: headache, muscle aches, sprains, tooth extraction and toothache, menstrual cramps, arthritis and rheumatism, and pain and fever of the common cold. It also may be used to reduce the risk of death and lessen the damaging effects of an acute heart attack. It is also used to reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes in certain men and women who have already had a heart attack or ischemic stroke. It may also be used to treat certain conditions as determined by your doctor which may not be listed in the professional package insert.

Aspirin is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID). It works by inhibiting several different chemical processes within the body that cause pain, inflammation, and fever. It also reduces the tendency for blood to clot.

  • Before Using This Medicine
  • Precautions
  • How to use Aspirin
  • Safety Information
  • Side Effects
  • Drug Interactions
  • Divider
    Before Using This Medicine

    Some medical conditions may interact with Aspirin. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

    • if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
    • if you are taking any prescription
    • if you are taking any nonprescription medicine
    • if you are taking any herbal preparation
    • if you are taking any dietary supplement
    • if you have allergies to medicines or other substances
    • if you have alcoholism or if you consume 3 or more alcohol-containing drinks every day
    • if you have asthma
    • if you have bleeding or clotting problems
    • if you have growths in the nose (nasal polyps)
    • if you have kidney or liver problems
    • if you have stomach or peptic ulcers (bleeding ulcers)
    • if you have heartburn
    • if you have upset stomach, stomach pain
    • if you have influenza (flu)
    • if you havechicken pox
    • if you have vitamin K deficiency
    • if you are a child with a stroke
    • if you are a child with a weakened blood vessel (cerebral aneurysm)
    • if you are a child with bleeding in the brain
    • if you are a child with Kawasaki syndrome (a rare inflammation causing heart problems in children)

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    Do NOT use Aspirin if:

    • you are allergic to any ingredient in Aspirin
    • you are a child or teenager with influenza (flu)
    • you are a child or teenager with chicken pox
    • you have bleeding problems such as hemophilia
    • you have bleeding problems such as von Willebrand disease
    • you have low blood platelets
    • you have had a severe allergic reaction (eg, severe rash, hives, breathing difficulties, dizziness) to aspirin, tartrazine, or an NSAID (eg, ibuprofen®, naproxen®, celecoxib)
    • you are taking anticoagulants (eg, heparin, warfarin) or methotrexate

    Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

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    How to use Aspirin

    Use Aspirin as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions. Aspirin may be taken with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation. Take Aspirin with a full glass of water (8 oz/240 mL). Do not lie down for 30 minutes after taking Aspirin.

    Use Aspirin exactly as directed on the package, unless instructed differently by your doctor. If you are taking Aspirin without a prescription, follow any warnings and precautions on the label.

    If you miss a dose of Aspirin and you are taking it regularly, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

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    Safety Information About Aspirin

    Aspirin contains aspirin. Before you begin taking any new prescription or over-the-counter medicine, read the ingredients to see if it also contains an aspirin-like medicine. If it does or if you are uncertain, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

    If you consume 3 or more alcohol-containing drinks every day, ask your doctor whether you should take Aspirin or other pain relievers/fever reducers. Aspirin may cause stomach bleeding. Alcohol use combined with Aspirin may increase your risk for stomach bleeding.

    Aspirin may reduce the number of blood cells that are needed for clotting. To prevent bleeding, avoid situations where bruising or injury may occur. Report any unusual bleeding, bruising, blood in stools, or dark tarry stools to your doctor.

    Aspirin has been linked to Reye syndrome. Do not give Aspirin to children or teenagers during or after chicken pox, flu, or other viral infections without checking with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist for more information.

    If Aspirin has a strong vinegar-like smell upon opening, do not use. It means the medicine is breaking down. Throw the bottle away safely and out of the reach of children; contact your pharmacist and replace.

    Before you have any medical or dental treatments, emergency care, or surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are using Aspirin.

    Do not take Aspirin for at least 7 days after any surgery unless directed by your health care provider. Do not take Aspirin for more than 10 days for pain or for more than 3 days for fever unless directed to do so by your health care provider.

    Safety in CHILDREN
    Talk to you doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about the brand you are using.

    If you plan on becoming pregnant, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using Aspirin during pregnancy. Aspirin is not recommended during the last 3 months (third trimester) of pregnancy due to the potential for fetal harm or complications during delivery. Aspirin is excreted in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you are using Aspirin, check with your doctor or pharmacist to discuss the risks to your baby.

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    Side Effects

    Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction:

    • Hives
    • Difficulty breathing
    • Swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat

    Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

    • bloody or black, tarry stools
    • confusion
    • diarrhea
    • dizziness
    • drowsiness
    • hearing loss
    • ringing in the ears
    • severe stomach pain
    • vomiting

    Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

    • heartburn
    • nausea
    • stomach upset

    This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions or need medical advice about side effects, contact your doctor or health care provider. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or at

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    Drug Interactions

    Some medicines MAY INTERACT with Aspirin. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

    • Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors (acetazolamide®)
    • Anticoagulants (heparin®, warfarin®)
    • NSAIDs (ibuprofen®, celecoxib)
    • Insulin and oral antidiabetics (glyburide, nateglinide)
    • Methotrexate or valproic acid
    • Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (enalapril®)
    • probenecid
    • sulfinpyrazone

    There may be other drugs not listed that can affect Aspirin. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

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