NZ Formulary

Aspirin (low-dose)


What does it do?

Low-dose aspirin is used to prevent clots forming in your blood. This reduces your chance of having a stroke or a heart attack.

How should you take it?

Take aspirin regularly as directed.
Swallow the coated tablets whole with a glass of water.
Dissolve the soluble tablets in a glass of water before taking.
Cardiprin® tablets may be dissolved in your mouth.

What if you forget a dose?

Should an occasional dose be missed it need not be taken later.

Can you take other medicines?

Some medicines available without a prescription may react with aspirin including:

  • anti-inflammatories, such as diclofenac (e.g. Voltaren®), ibuprofen (e.g. Nurofen®), or aspirin (e.g. Disprin®, in doses used for pain relief). These can also be found in some cold and flu medicines (e.g. Nurofen Cold and Flu®).

Tell your pharmacist or doctor about all medicines or treatments that you may be taking, including vitamins, herbal products (e.g. ginkgo) or recreational drugs.

What side effects might you notice?

Side EffectsRecommended action

Symptoms of allergy including: skin rash, itching, swelling, trouble breathing

Reduced number of blood cells that help your blood to clot - symptoms include: easy or unusual bruising or bleeding

Tell your doctor immediately

Stomach upset

Tell your doctor if troublesome

If you notice any other effects, discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

Other information:

  • Tell your doctor if you have stomach, liver or bleeding problems, or if you have asthma.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.
  • It is important to tell anyone who gives you medical or dental treatment that you are taking aspirin.
  • Aspirin should not be used in children without medical advice.