Aspirin vs Plavix clopidogrel Differences Side Effects Bleeding Risks Benefits

Aspirin vs Plavix clopidogrel Differences Side Effects Bleeding Risks Benefits

Aspirin vs. Plavix (clopidogrel)

Aspirin is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) used to treat fever, pain, and inflammation. It also prevents blood clots and is used to prevent heart attack and stroke. Other NSAIDs include ibuprofen (Aleve, Motrin), indomethacin (Indocin), and nabumetone (Relafen).

NSAIDs block the enzyme that makes prostaglandins, reducing inflammation, pain, and fever. Aspirin inhibits platelet function differently from other NSAIDs.

What is Plavix? How does it work?

Plavix (clopidogrel bisulfate) is an anti-platelet drug used to prevent blood clots. Plavix binds to the P2Y12 receptor on platelets, preventing platelet activation. It belongs to a class of drugs called P2Y12 inhibitors.

What are the uses for aspirin and Plavix? Can they be taken together?

Aspirin uses

Aspirin treats inflammation, fever, and pain, including those caused by arthritis, lupus, and injuries. It also reduces the risk of stroke or heart attack.

Plavix uses

Clopidogrel is used for preventing strokes, heart attacks, and death in people with previous stroke or heart attack, or peripheral arterial disease.

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The combination of clopidogrel and aspirin is better than either alone in preventing another heart attack, but the risk of bleeding is higher.


What are the side effects of aspirin vs. Plavix?

Aspirin side effects

Most people benefit from aspirin with few side effects. However, serious side effects can occur, including gastrointestinal issues and ringing in the ears.

Other side effects of aspirin include aggravation of certain conditions and interactions with other medications.

Plavix side effects

Clopidogrel has similar tolerability to aspirin. Common side effects include severe bleeding and allergic reactions.

Clopidogrel rarely causes a serious condition called thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP).

What is the dosage of aspirin vs. Plavix?

Aspirin dosage

  • Doses range from 50 mg to 6000 mg daily depending on the use.
  • Usual doses for mild to moderate pain are 350 or 650 mg every 4-6 hours.
  • Doses for rheumatoid arthritis include 500-1950 mg every 4-6 hours.
  • Heart attacks are prevented with 75-325 mg daily.
  • Immediate chewing of 160-325 mg of non-enteric coated aspirin is recommended for heart attack symptoms.
  • The dose for preventing another stroke is 75-100 mg daily.

Plavix dosage

  • Clopidogrel bisulfate is usually taken once daily.
  • Clopidogrel is activated by liver enzymes and may not work well in people with reduced enzyme activity due to liver disease.
  • The recommended dose for treating unstable angina or heart attack is 300 mg initially followed by 75 mg daily in combination with 75-325 mg of aspirin.
  • Peripheral arterial disease or recent stroke is treated with 75 mg daily.
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What are the drug interactions of aspirin and Plavix?

Aspirin drug interactions

Aspirin may interact with other drugs such as NSAIDs, blood pressure medications, and methotrexate, affecting their actions.

Individuals taking blood thinners should avoid aspirin due to the increased risk of bleeding.

Plavix drug interactions

The combination of clopidogrel with NSAIDs increases the risk of stomach and intestinal bleeding.

Combining clopidogrel with warfarin or other bleeding-causing drugs also increases the risk of bleeding.

Clopidogrel is affected by drugs that reduce liver enzyme activity, and these drugs should be avoided when using clopidogrel.

Are aspirin or Plavix safe to take if I’m pregnant or breastfeeding?

Aspirin safety

Aspirin is generally avoided during pregnancy and excreted into breast milk.

Plavix safety

There are no adequate studies of clopidogrel in pregnant women. It may appear in breast milk, so caution is advised for nursing mothers.

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Aspirin and Plavix are drugs used to prevent blood clots, reducing the risk of strokes and heart attacks. They can be taken together, but this increases the risk of gastrointestinal bleeding.


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