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Why is this medication prescribed?
Aspirin is used to relieve mild to moderate pain; reduce fever, redness, and swelling; and to help prevent blood from clotting. It is used to relieve discomfort caused by numerous medical problems, including headache, infections, and arthritis. It also is used to reduce the risk of a second heart attack or stroke. Larger doses of aspirin are used to treat gout.
This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
How should this medicine be used?
Aspirin comes as a regular, coated, extended-release (long-acting), chewable, and effervescent tablet; capsule; and gum to take by mouth and a suppository to use rectally. Aspirin is often taken without a prescription. If your doctor prescribes aspirin for you, you will receive specific directions for how often you should take it. Follow the directions on the package or prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take aspirin exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
Do not break, crush, or chew extended-release tablets and do not open extended-release capsules; swallow them whole.
If regular aspirin tablets cause a bad taste or aftertaste or burning in the throat, try taking coated tablets to avoid these problems.
Regular, coated, and extended-release aspirin tablets and capsules should be swallowed with a full glass of water or milk or after meals to avoid stomach upset.
Chewable aspirin tablets may be chewed, crushed, dissolved in a liquid, or swallowed whole; drink a full glass of water, milk, or fruit juice immediately after taking these tablets.
An oral liquid form of aspirin can be prepared by dissolving effervescent tablets (Alka-Seltzer) according to the directions on the package.
To insert an aspirin suppository into the rectum, follow these steps:
Adults should not take aspirin for pain for more than 10 days (5 days for children) without talking to a doctor. Aspirin should not be taken by adults or children for high fever, fever lasting longer than 3 days, or recurrent fever unless under a doctor's supervision. Do not give more than five doses to a child in a 24-hour period unless directed to do so by a doctor.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking aspirin,
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
To prevent stomach upset, take aspirin with meals, a full glass of water, or milk.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Although side effects from aspirin are not common, they can occur. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Do not use tablets that have a strong vinegar smell. Store aspirin suppositories in a cool place or in a refrigerator. Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
In case of emergency/overdose
In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor may order certain lab tests to check your response to aspirin.
If you have diabetes, regular use of eight or more regular strength aspirin tablets a day may affect test results for urine sugar. Talk to your doctor about proper monitoring of your blood sugar while taking aspirin.
If you have had oral surgery or tonsils removed in the last 7 days, do not use chewable or effervescent aspirin tablets, gum, or aspirin in crushed tablets or gargles.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about aspirin.
Last updated: Tue, 06 Jan 2009 00:20:03 GMT