The results of a new study, reported recently in Diabetes Care, suggest that low-dose aspirin is much less effective in warding off heart disease in patients with type 2 diabetes, compared with other high-risk individuals. Whereas some previous research had shown that low-dose aspirin lowers the risk of heart disease?related death by >40% when taken by patients with at least 1 heart disease risk factor, other research had suggested that diabetics are less likely to benefit from aspirin.
Therefore, members of the Primary Prevention Project Collaborative Group looked at data from 1031 diabetics and 3753 nondiabetics who were followed for 4 years. The participants were randomly chosen to receive aspirin or no aspirin and vitamin E or no vitamin E. The research showed that, in the diabetic group, aspirin use had little effect on the risk of death, heart attack, or stroke. The researchers said, however, that, because of the relatively small number of diabetic patients, larger studies focusing specifically on diabetic patients are needed in order to assess aspirin?s effects.