Export file:


  • RIS(for EndNote,Reference Manager,ProCite)
  • BibTex
  • Text


  • Citation Only
  • Citation and Abstract

Does Utilitarian Policy such as Smoking Cessation Lend Support to Wider Aspirin Use?

Cochrane Institute, Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales, UK CF14 4XN

Tobacco control policy seems to be based on a utilitarian principle that public health is best served by a range of measures that will provide overall population benefit. Aspirin may have a potential wider role since meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials shows it reduces the risk of a first vascular event and also cancer. Are smoking cessation and the public health potential of aspirin different? The benefit versus risk balance of aspirin, an inexpensive and easily available medicine, deserves serious consideration as a public health measure in middle age. Smoking cessation and wider aspirin use are not seen as either competing or duplicating policy areas, but complementary. Their comparison has been purposefully selected because of common impacts, namely reduced vascular disease and cancer with increases in undesirable effects, notably gastrointestinal pathology. Part of the driver for this paper is to convey the message that public health policy has benefits and risks and the concept of a universally effective policy is unrealistic. Is it time for public health action to increase the use of aspirin?
  Article Metrics

Keywords aspirin; policy; vascular disease; cancer; gastrointestinal effects; smoking; public health; utilitarian

Citation: Gareth Morgan. Does Utilitarian Policy such as Smoking Cessation Lend Support to Wider Aspirin Use?. AIMS Public Health , 2015, 2(2): 223-226. doi: 10.3934/publichealth.2015.2.223


  • 1. Bhowmik D, Wang X, et al. (2013) Does combination pharmacological intervention for smoking cessation prevent post-cessation weight gain? A systemic review. Addict Behav 38: 1865-1875.    
  • 2. Bastida G, Beltrán B (2011) Ulcerative colitis in smokers, non-smokers and ex-smokers. World J Gastr 17: 2740-2747.
  • 3. Independent UK Panel on Breast Cancer Screening (2012) The benefits and harms of breast cancer screening: an independent review. Lancet 380: 1778-1786.    
  • 4. Antithrombotic Trialists' (ATT) Collaboration, Baigent C, Blackwell L, et al. (2009) Aspirin in the primary and secondary prevention of vascular disease: collaborative meta-analysis of individual participant data from randomised trials. Lancet 373: 1849-1860.    
  • 5. Rothwell PM, Price JF, Fowkes FG, et al. (2012) Short-term effects of daily aspirin on cancer incidence, mortality, and non-vascular death: analysis of the time course of risks and benefits in 51 randomised controlled trials. Lancet 379:1602-1612.    
  • 6. Morgan G, Elwood P (2011) Aspirin bleeding in perspective. Qual Primary Care 19: 251-253.
  • 7. Baigent C (2005) Aspirin for all over 50? (against) Brit Med J; 1440-1443.
  • 8. Elwood P, Morgan G, et al. (2005) Aspirin for all over 50? (for) Brit Med J: 1440-1441.
  • 9. Elwood P, Morgan G, et al. (2011) Aspirin taking in a south-Wales country. Br J Cardiology 18: 238-240.
  • 10. Elwood P, Longley M (2010) My health: whose responsibility? A jury decides.
  • J Epidemiol Community Health 64: 761-764.
  • 11. Kurth T (2012) Aspirin and cancer prevention. Brit Med J 344; Available from: http://www.who.int/tobacco/research/cessation/en/


Reader Comments

your name: *   your email: *  

Copyright Info: 2015, Gareth Morgan, licensee AIMS Press. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licese (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0)

Download full text in PDF

Export Citation

Copyright © AIMS Press All Rights Reserved