Monday, March 27, 2017

The Good News: Xarelto Is Much Better At Preventing Blood Clots Than Low Dose Aspirin

The Bad News:  You Ain't Got Insurance, You Ain't Wealthy, You Ain't Going to Get It

For an illustration of the idiocy in America's health care system the story of low dose aspirin and prescription drugs is a vital lesson.  Low dose aspirin costs about 50 cents a month and is very effective at preventing blood clots that cause all sorts of health problems.  But a prescription drug is much better, per report in the WSJ.

In a study of 3,365 patients from about 30 countries, presented at an annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology here Saturday, researchers said a low dose of a blood thinner called rivaroxaban reduced the risk of a recurrence by about 70% compared with aspirin, without increasing the risk of bleeding. The patients, whose median ages were 59 or 60, had already been on blood thinners for up to a year; it was unclear whether they needed further treatment.
The researchers followed the patients for a year and found that 1.5% of patients on 20 milligrams of rivaroxaban daily, and 1.2% of patients on 10 milligrams daily, had a recurring blood clot. By contrast, 4.4% of patients on aspirin had recurrences. The number of patients who experienced bleeding was similar in the rivaroxaban and aspirin groups.

So what's the problem? Well the prescription drug costs about $5,000 a year. Oh. That. One can just imagine how giddy Trump and Ryan are that millions of Americans could lose health insurance coverage that reduces that cost to a manageable level.

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