Thursday, 17 October 2013

Coastal NSW city welcomes international aspirin trial

aspree125The largest primary prevention aspirin study ever undertaken in healthy older people has officially launched their 13th Australian clinical trial centre at the Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute (IHMRI), University of Wollongong (UOW) on the 3rd of October.

Led by Monash University, the large scale ASPREE (ASPirin in Reducing Events in the Elderly) study, has so far engaged over 12,500 participants in clinical research across south east Australian states and territories.

ASPREE is testing whether aspirin contributes to good health in older people and should be prescribed to all otherwise healthy people aged 70 years and over.

Professor John McNeil, Principal Investigator of ASPREE and Head of School of Public Health & Preventive Medicine, said at the launch that the study aims to improve the health and wellbeing of Australia’s ageing population.

“Aspirin is one of the most widely used medications in the world, frequently prescribed to people who have already suffered a heart attack or some forms of stroke,” he said.

Professor McNeil said while aspirin has wide ranging potential health benefits, it also has side effects, such as increased bleeding, that may offset its benefits.

“The ASPREE study will be the first of its kind to determine whether the benefits of aspirin outweigh the risks.”

Residents in Wollongong and neighbouring regions, who are over 70 years of age and in good health, will be invited to take part in the study via a letter from their GP, which will be sent direct to their homes.

The study is being funded by the US National Institute on Aging, with funding support also received from the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC).

To be involved in the study, speak to your GP, or call ASPREE directly on 1800 728 745 (toll free from a landline) or visit http://www.aspree.org/

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