|Bad for the population, good for me|
The authors, bloggers at The Incidental Economist, begin the article with a sobering look at the number needed to treat (NNT). For the primary prevention of myocardial infarction (MI), if 2000 people with a 10% or higher risk of MI in the next 10 years take aspirin for 2 years, one MI will be prevented. 1999 people will have gotten no benefit from aspirin, and four will have an MI in spite of taking aspirin. Aspirin, a very good drug on all accounts, is far from a panacea, and this from a man (me) who takes it in spite of falling far below the risk threshold at which it is recommended.