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Daily Aspirin Could Increase Fertility

Daily Aspirin Could Increase Fertility

By: Sarah Massey, M.Sc.

Posted on: in News | Life Science News

Researchers from the University of Utah, and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), suggest that taking a daily low-dose of aspirin could increase chances of pregnancy, especially for women who have previously miscarried. The findings were presented at the American Society of Reproductive Medicine Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland.

The researchers say that taking 81mg of aspirin per day could help reduce overall inflammation in the body, increasing the chances of conception. The thought is that by reducing systemic inflammation, the conditions within the uterus are more favorable for fertilization and subsequent implantation of an embryo.

Aspirin – or acetylsalicylic acid – is most often used to relieve minor aches and pains, and reduce fever and inflammation. Aspirin therapy is also recommended to reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack among at-risk individuals, by reducing platelet counts in the blood.

Recently, aspirin was implicated in a prolonged life expectancy for patients with certain types of gastrointestinal cancer. Boosted fertility may soon be added to the long list of benefits daily aspirin intake may provide.

The current study involved 1,228 between the ages of 18 and 40, who had experienced a miscarriage in the last year. In addition, all of the women who participated in the study were found to have systemic inflammation.

The researchers found that women who took a low-dose of aspirin daily were 17% more likely to become pregnant, and nearly 20% more likely to experience a successful birth. According to the study coordinators, the aspirin may reduce levels of inflammation throughout the body, making the uterus a more hospitable environment for the developing embryo.

 

Previous research has also provided a link between aspirin therapy and an increased chance of conception, according to Professor Richard Poulson, vice president of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM). Aspirin increases the flow of blood to the pelvis and can act to thicken the lining of the womb, increasing the odds of embryo implantation.

Poulson – who also acts as professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine – promotes the use of aspirin use among women trying to conceive, especially in those undergoing fertility treatment. The current guidelines provided by the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommend daily low-doses of aspirin to women after 12 weeks of pregnancy who are at a high risk of developing preeclampsia.

“Unless they are allergic or have a gastric condition, I would certainly advise them to take it, there is no harm,” says Poulson. “Many people use it routinely, including in our clinics. We have been doing this for many years.”

Despite the findings of the currently study, many physicians are skeptical about prescribing daily aspirin for all of their expectant mothers. Many healthcare providers believe there is still not enough evidence to recommend aspirin for pregnant women, warning that the drug can have some serious side effects such as a risk of internal bleeding.

Dr. Stuart Lavery, consultant gynecologist at Imperial College London in the UK says, “My impression is that most doctors think aspirin would be beneficial in a sub-group of women, but would there be benefits for all women? My impression is it is probably too blunt an instrument.”

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