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Baby Aspirin - Uses, Dosage, Warnings, and Interactions

Published on Oct 14, 2022 and last reviewed on Mar 31, 2023   -  7 min read


Baby Aspirin is a medication that reduces pain, fever, or inflammation. To know more about it, read below.


Baby Aspirin is a low-dose Aspirin that acts as an analgesic and antipyretic. It is usually prescribed for pain, heart attack, and fever. The medication is recommended for those at risk of heart attacks or those with a history of heart attacks. The term “baby Aspirin “ stems from the lower dose used for children, and a single pill of baby Aspirin contains 81 mg of Aspirin.

Drug Group:

Aspirin belongs to the drug class called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). It is an acetylated salicylate and exhibits a broad range of pharmacologic activities, including analgesics, antipyretics, and antiplatelet properties.

What Is Baby Aspirin Used For?

Baby Aspirin is prescribed as low-dose Aspirin to prevent heart attacks or stroke, and for people with a history of heart diseases. It reduces the risk of major adverse cardiovascular events.

Aspirin inhibits platelet aggregation and is used in the prevention of blood clots, stroke, and myocardial infarction. They reduce fever and relieve mild to moderate painful conditions like muscle aches, toothaches, common colds, sprains, burns, neuralgia, dysmenorrhea, synovitis, and headaches. The drug may also be used to reduce swelling and pain in conditions such as arthritis. Aspirin is given to reduce the risk of blood vessel damage and to avoid clots around the heart in people with Kawasaki disease. Baby Aspirin is prescribed off-label for cancer prevention and pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia.

How Does Baby Aspirin Work?

Effect on Pain and Fever:

Acetylsalicylic acid disrupts the production of prostaglandins throughout the body by targeting cyclooxygenase-1(COX-1) and (COX-2). These prostaglandins increase the sensitivity of pain receptors and substances like histamine and bradykinin. The disruption of the production and release of prostaglandins in inflammation is stopped by the action of the drug at the pain receptors, preventing symptoms of pain.

Effect on Platelet Aggregation:

Acetylsalicylic acid inhibits platelet aggregation by interfering with thromboxane A2 in platelets caused by COX-1 inhibition. The acetyl group of acetylsalicylic acid binds with the serine residue of the cyclooxygenase enzyme, leading to irreversible inhibition. This stops the conversion of arachidonic acid to thromboxane A2, which induces platelet aggregation.

What Is the Onset of Action of Baby Aspirin?

When taken orally, Aspirin is rapidly absorbed in the stomach and proximal small intestine. The non-ionized acetylsalicylic acid passes through the stomach lining by passive diffusion. The absorption of salicylate in the stomach occurs in the pH range of 2.15-4.10. Intestinal absorption of acetylsalicylic acid occurs at a faster rate. Half of the dose is hydrolysis to salicylic acid in the first hour. The peak plasma concentration occurs between one to two hours post-administration.

The drug is distributed rapidly to the body tissues and crosses the placenta. Salicylate is metabolized in the liver and a small portion is converted to gentisic acid and other hydroxybenzoic acids. Excretion occurs through the kidneys and can be found in the urine soon after administration. The half-life of salicylate ranges from 3.5 hours to 4.5 hours.


Aspirin does not become habit-forming when taken for a long time or in large doses.

Expiry Date:

You should not take medicines after their expiry date. You can find the expiry date on the medicine packaging.

What Is the Dosage of Baby Aspirin?

The daily dose of Aspirin should be between 75 mg and 100 mg a day. The dosage depends on age, overall health, history of heart disease, and future risk of heart attack or stroke.


How to Use Baby Aspirin?

Baby Aspirin should be taken as directed by the doctor, and it is advised to avoid taking it for a long time. The medicine should not be taken often unless prescribed. Aspirin should not be taken on an empty stomach to prevent stomach upset. It should be swallowed whole with a glass of water with meals. It is recommended to take Aspirin at bedtime to protect against heart attacks or strokes. Aspirin comes in two forms- a regular tablet and an extended-release tablet. The chewable tablets may be chewed, crushed, or dissolved in a liquid. It is advised to stop taking Aspirin for some time before surgery or any invasive procedures.

Missed Dose:

If you miss a dose of Baby Aspirin, it should be taken as soon as possible. Do not take two doses at once, as it may cause adverse events.

What Are the Drug Warnings and Precautions?

  • Pregnancy and Breastfeeding - Aspirin is avoided during pregnancy as it may cause adverse effects on the fetus. Baby Aspirin with a low dose may be given to prevent complications of pregnancy. The drug excreted in breast milk may adversely affect the infant.

  • Pediatrics - Aspirin is not recommended for children younger than 16 years, especially in children with symptoms of influenza or chickenpox, as it can cause a fatal condition called Reye syndrome.

  • Allergies - Patients with a history of allergy to Aspirin or other NSAIDs should avoid using Aspirin without informing the doctor.

  • Asthma - People with asthma should administer Aspirin with caution as it may trigger the symptoms.

  • Liver Disease - Aspirin may cause elevation of serum aminotransferase with jaundice or signs of liver dysfunction and should be avoided.

  • Kidney Disease - Patients with kidney dysfunction should not use Aspirin without consulting the doctor, as it may increase the bleeding tendency.

  • Geriatric - Baby Aspirin should not be given to patients over age 70 as it may cause atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and may increase the risk of bleeding.

  • Blood-clotting Disorders - Aspirin should not be given to people with hemophilia, vitamin K deficiency, or low platelet count, as it increases the risk of bleeding.

  • Gastric Ulcers - Aspirin may damage the stomach and intestinal lining leading to erosions and ulcers, which may tend to bleed.

  • Smoking - Tobacco smoking results in increased platelet aggregation and may inhibit platelet activity in smokers with coronary heart disease.

  • Driving - Aspirin may decrease alertness and affect vision or may make you sleepy and dizzy and should be avoided when driving.

What Are the Side Effects of Baby Aspirin?

It is advised to get medical help if you have signs of allergy to Aspirin, and it should be stopped immediately.

The common side effects may include,

  • Upset stomach.

  • Heartburn.

  • Drowsiness.

  • Mild headache.

  • Loss of appetite.

  • Abdominal pain.

Serious side effects may include,

  • Ringing ears.

  • Easy bruising or bleeding.

  • Difficulty in hearing.

  • Severe nausea.

  • Unexplained tiredness.

  • Dizziness.

  • Dark urine.

  • Fever lasting longer than three days.

  • Swelling or pain lasting more than ten days.

  • Sudden vision change.

What Are the Interactions of Baby Aspirin?

Aspirin can interact with other medicines, food, and medical conditions, which can prevent the drug from working well.

Drug Interactions:

  • Amlodipine.

  • Atorvastatin.

  • Carvedilol.

  • Fish oil.

  • Furosemide.

  • gabapentin.

  • Hydrochlorothiazide.

  • Levothyroxine.

  • Lisinopril.

  • Losartan.

  • Metformin.

  • Metoprolol.

  • Omeprazole.

  • Pantoprazole.

  • Vitamin B12.

  • Vitamin C.

  • Vitamin D3.

  • Simvastatin.

  • Nimesulide.

  • Oxyphenbutazone.

Food Interaction:

  • Vitamin K - Green leafy vegetables rich in vitamin K can decrease the blood-thinning property of Aspirin.

  • Grapefruit Juice - Grapefruit juice can alter the absorption of Aspirin and can result in a greater risk of side effects.

  • Alcohol - Alcohol consumption with Aspirin can result in gastrointestinal distress and may cause nausea and vomiting. It may worsen ulcers, heartburn, and extreme discomfort. It may cause black, bloody, or tarry stools that look like coffee grounds.

Disease Interaction:

  • Hemorrhagic Disorders - The use of Aspirin is contraindicated in patients with active bleeding disorders such as hemophilia and Von Willebrand disease, as it interferes with coagulation and prolongs bleeding time.
  • Asthma - NSAIDs are contraindicated in patients with a history of asthma, urticaria, or other allergic reactions and should be used with caution. These patients need to be regularly monitored for changes in signs and symptoms of asthma.

  • GI Toxicity - Aspirin may cause gastrointestinal bleeding and mucosal damage and should be administered cautiously in patients with a history of GI disease or alcoholism.

  • Renal Dysfunction - Salicylates are eliminated by the kidney. Therapy with Aspirin should be administered with caution in patients with renal impairment and should be given low doses.

  • Reye’s Syndrome - The use of salicylates in children with influenza or varicella infections can increase the risk of Reye’s syndrome.

  • Anemia - Gastrointestinal blood loss occurs in people with the therapy of Aspirin and may lead to iron-deficiency anemia.

  • Dialysis - Aspirin is readily removed by hemodialysis. Therefore it is necessary to adjust the dose after dialysis.

  • Hepatotoxicity - Aspirin use may induce hepatic injury and should be administered cautiously. In patients with active hepatitis.

Frequently Asked Questions


How Does Baby Aspirin Work?

Baby Aspirin is a drug containing a low dose of Aspirin and is used as an analgesic (pain-relieving) and antiplatelet (preventing the formation of blood clots). It acts by inhibiting the action of certain specialized proteins (COX) that are involved in the sensitization of pain. Hence, baby Aspirin is usually prescribed to treat pain, fever, and associated conditions due to these effects.


How Is Baby Aspirin Different From Aspirin?

Baby Aspirin differs from Aspirin based on its dose. The adult dose of Aspirin is 325 mg per tablet, whereas baby Aspirin contains only a quarter of this dose. It is marketed at 81 to 100 mg per tablet. The low dose is beneficial to treat or reduce the risk of various heart-related complications such as heart attacks, strokes, blood strokes, etc.


When Is Baby Aspirin Not Recommended?

Baby Aspirin is not recommended in the following cases:
- In patients above the age of 60, baby Aspirin profoundly increases the risk of bleeding in these individuals. This action negates the advantages of heart disease prevention.
- In patients with stomach ulcers or bleeding in the stomach because baby Aspirin can worsen these conditions leading to complications.


Can I Take Baby Aspirin Every Day?

Though baby Aspirin greatly reduces the risk of blood clots, daily administration can cause serious side effects like bleeding in the stomach. The time, duration, and frequency to administer the drug should only be as per the doctor's advice. It is also important to seek medical help if the patient experiences symptoms like abdominal pain, vomiting, etc.


What Are the Side Effects of Baby Aspirin?

The common side effects of the drug include heartburn, dizziness, nausea, upset stomach, fatigue, etc. These effects usually go on their own. However, serious side effects like ringing in the ears, swelling, vision changes, etc., require immediate medical intervention.


When Should I Take Baby Aspirin?

Research indicates administration of baby Aspirin before night tends to have increased protection from heart attacks or strokes. A Dutch study reported that nearly 300 heart attack survivors taking the drug to prevent a second heart attack provided positive results of decreased risk of clotting complications.


Are There Any Alternatives to Baby Aspirin?

- It has been found that ginger, like Aspirin, acts as a blood thinner that can stop clots from forming and causing heart attacks or strokes. It works similarly to aspirin in reducing inflammation by inhibiting COX-2, an enzyme that causes inflammation.
- There are also myths about the use of turmeric. However, the effect of turmeric is not yet well established. Some research suggests that turmeric can increase blood thinning and interfere with blood-thinning drugs, whereas other studies show the opposite.


Is There a Natural Form For Baby Aspirin?

For ages, people have utilized willow bark, which is the bark of several species of willow trees, to treat pain. Salicin is the name of the active component found in willow bark-based medications. Willow bark is sometimes used as an Aspirin substitute, especially by people who frequently suffer from back pain or headaches.


Does Baby Aspirin Cause Organ Damage?

Baby Aspirin was linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular events in individuals with chronic kidney disease and low body weight. Gastrointestinal bleeding is one of the major side effects of Aspirin use.

Article Resources

Last reviewed at:
31 Mar 2023  -  7 min read




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