Low-dose aspirin may protect the lungs and reduce the risk of severe illness and death for COVID-19 patients, a team of researchers at George Washington University said in a study recently published in the journal Anesthesia & Analgesia.
The study included 412 patients who were admitted to US hospitals between March and July 2020.
By evaluating the patients’ records, researchers found that aspirin use was linked to a 44% reduction in mechanical ventilation, a 43% reduction in ICU admission and a 47% reduction for in-hospital death.
"As we learned about the connection between blood clots and COVID-19, we knew that aspirin - used to prevent stroke and heart attack - could be important for COVID-19 patients,” said Dr. Jonathan Chow, who was involved in the study.
This is not the first study to draw a link between aspirin and good health outcomes with COVID-19.
A study published in the journal PLOS One, which evaluated more than 30,000 US veterans with COVID-19, found that those who had already been taking aspirin had half the risk of mortality as those not taking daily aspirin.
“There is growing evidence that thrombotic and inflammatory pathways contribute to the severity of COVID-19. Common medications such as aspirin, that mitigate these pathways, may decrease COVID-19 mortality,” the study notes.
The use of aspirin to reduce the risk of COVID-19 mortality is promising because the drug is inexpensive, especially when compared to other existing COVID-19 treatments like Remdesir or Regeneron's antibody cocktail.