What is acetylsalicylic acid and what is it for? Dosage and risks

Although its concrete medical name is rather acetylsalicylic acid(Or simply AAS), the reality is that we popularly tend to know it with the name of its brand, which finally became part of the common use: aspirin.

It consists of a drug belonging to the family of salicylates, whose history goes back more than 100 years, thus becoming the first anti-inflammatory that was created for the first time. Since then, tons of aspirin have been used and consumed in practically the entire world.

What is acetylsalicylic acid?

As you surely know, we are facing a drug popularly known by the name of aspirin, although abbreviated is also known medically with the name of AAS whose chemical structure is C9H8OR4.

It consists of a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory(NSAIDs), functioning in a manner quite similar to other NSAID anti-inflammatory drugs, with the difference of being able to block the normal functioning of platelets, acting as we will see as platelet antiaggregant.

It is obtained from the white willow, whose scientific name isSalix alba, and about which apparently there is already a certain record about its medical use throughout history. In fact, many historians agree that the ancient Egyptians could have used the bark of this tree for medicinal purposes, just as both the Chinese and the Sumerians used their leaves for their analgesic qualities.

What is it for?

Acetylsalicylic acid is a drug widely used from a medical point of view for its qualities as analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antipyretic and platelet antiaggregant. That is, it is able to relieve pain and general malaise, while also helping to reduce and reduce fever.

It also acts as an anticoagulant, so that it prevents the blood from stagnating, preventing the formation of blood thrombi. Therefore it is very common to be prescribed to patients with circulation problems or who have suffered an acute myocardial infarction.

Moreover, some scientific studies have found that 1/5 of aspirin a day is especially useful in preventing both heart attacks and thrombi.

What are the risks of acetylsalicylic acid?

However, and here we are faced with one of the greatest risks we find in acetylsalicylic acid, It is very easy to produce bleeding in the stomach, even at normal and normal doses, which may cause gastric or duodenal ulcer, gastric irritation, nausea and vomiting.

The most obvious risk is the possibility of causing erosive gastritis, with a slight gastrointestinal bleeding that, with the passage of time, can cause iron deficiency.

While its abusive intake and above recommended doses produces nephritis (inflammatory and / or dysfunctional process of the kidney), peripheral vasodilation, vomiting, delirium, psychosis, vertigo and stupor. And at even higher doses it can produce profuse breathing and coma.

It is not recommended for children under 12 years

On the other hand, we are in turn facing one of the most serious and serious contraindications of acetylsalicylic acid, given that it is not recommended to administer it in children under 12 years who suffer chicken pox or flu, since it can lead to the appearance of Reye's syndrome, a rare but extremely serious disease.

Nor is it recommended for pregnant women, especially before delivery, as it can cause hemostatic disorders in babies, and mothers can also suffer from confined bleeding.

Recommended doses of acetylsalicylic acid

The recommended dose of acetylsalicylic acid varies between 500 mg and 1 gramin each shot, and can be repeated after 4 hours. However, the maximum dose is 3 grams per day (2 grams per day in the case of older adults). This article is published for informational purposes only. It can not and should not replace the consultation with a Physician. We advise you to consult your Trusted Doctor. ThemesAnti-inflammatory

New Aspirin Guidelines (December 2022)