The risk of a person suffering from a stroke is 1000 greater after a mini-stroke has occurred.
A study conducted by Oxford University has found taking aspirin immediately after experiencing stroke warning signs could decrease their chances of suffering from a major stroke.
Transient ischemic attack (TIA) or a mini-stroke commonly occurs in people who later suffer a major stroke, sometimes days later. The risk of having a major stroke is 1000 times higher once a TIA has occurred as reported in U.S. News and World Report.
The study looked at data from 56,000 people and found that taking aspirin immediately could decrease the risk of a major fatal or disabling stroke by nearly 70-80%. Aspirin has been long known to help prevent strokes when taken daily but its immediate treatment with aspirin had not been researched fully.
Prof. Peter Rothwell from the University of Oxford and lead researcher in the study, believe this could dramatically help those visiting their doctor after TIA symptoms who will now know to give aspirin straight away.
“Our findings confirm the effectiveness of urgent treatment after TIA and minor stroke, and show that aspirin is the most important component. Immediate treatment with aspirin can substantially reduce the risk and severity of early recurrent stroke. This finding has implications for doctors, who should give aspirin immediately if a TIA or minor stroke is suspected, rather than waiting for specialist assessment and investigations.”
With many people each day suffering from strokes, education is now the key to help prevent major strokes through self-medication and start to develop a new set of national clinical guidelines on stroke.
“Encouraging people to take aspirin if they think they may have had a TIA or minor stroke – experiencing sudden-onset unfamiliar neurological symptoms – could help to address this situation, particularly if urgent medical help is unavailable.”
The study was published in The Lancet.