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Aspirin and Hypertension: When You Take Your Aspirin May Alter Your Blood Pressure

A new study shows that the time of day you take low dose aspirin may affect your blood pressure. Find out how to time your low dose aspirin dosage to get better blood pressure control.

If you’ve been diagnosed with hypertension you may have been told by your doctor to take low dose aspirin each day to potentially reduce your risk of a heart attack. Aspirin has been shown in some studies to have a positive effect not only on blood pressure but also on the endothelial cells that line the heart and blood vessels. If a study conducted in Spain on aspirin and hypertension holds true when you take your daily aspirin may be important in determining your blood pressure.

Researchers at the University of Vigo in Spain carried out a study looked at the effects of aspirin and hypertension on the blood pressures of 244 prehypertensive patients. Prehypertensive means their blood pressures were above normal levels but not quite at the hypertensive stage. Some of the prehypertensive subjects in the study were given low dose aspirin in the morning while others were given aspirin only at night. Their blood pressures were closely monitored for two days and again after three months of aspirin therapy. There were also control groups who received no aspirin.

After analyzing the results, the researchers found the group who received low dose aspirin at night had a mean decrease in blood pressure of 5.4 mm. Hg for the systolic and 3.4 mm Hg for the diastolic whereas the group who received the low dose aspirin in the morning had no change in blood pressure. This suggests that in terms of aspirin and hypertension, how you time your aspirin dosage could have a significant impact on blood pressure levels.

Although the drop in blood pressure as a result of using the aspirin at night in this aspirin and hypertension study wasn’t dramatic, the results were significant. The researchers believe that if this association holds true, timing when aspirin is taken on a daily basis could help slow down the progression of hypertension and possibly reduce the need for higher doses of prescription hypertension medications. It’s also possible that borderline or prehypertensive patients might be able to delay starting antihypertensives by taking low dose aspirin at night as opposed to in the morning. This study on aspirin and hypertension also raises the intriguing question of how the timing of other medications might affect disease progression and treatment.

If you have hypertension and take low dose aspirin should you take your aspirin at night? There would seem to be little reason not to give this a try as long as you clear it with your doctor first. It would be helpful to get baseline blood pressure readings through home monitoring before changing the timing of your aspirin and compare those readings to ones you get after you start the night time aspirin therapy. Just be sure to continue to take your low dose aspirin if your doctor prescribed it particularly with the literature showing a positive association between aspirin and hypertension in terms of heart health.

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