An important test at the Medical Center At Franklin can now help aspirin therapy users and their physicians determine if aspirin is providing an effective protective benefit for those at risk.
Dr. Roy Reynolds of the Medical Center At Franklin, says, "The test is designed to tell how effective is your platelet? How effective is your aspirin therapy? We've not really had a test like this in the past to tell us that."
The Ultegra Verify-Now Aspirin test takes only a few minutes and can confirm that the current aspirin regimen is effective in preventing arterial blood clotting. The Medical Center At Franklin is one of only two hospitals in Kentucky that currently provide this test.
Research shoes as many as 30 percent of aspirin users are unresponsive. Twenty-five million people are currently on an aspirin therapy program, so that means five to seven people are not benefiting.
Dawn Parker is in charge of Ancillary Services at the Medical Center At Franklin. She says, "Most people that take the test (are using aspirin therapy) are getting blood drawn for other things too. So we could just get an extra tube and do the test then, if their doctor would order it."
If the test shows that a person is resistant to aspirin therapy they would need alternative treatment, such as a higher dosage of aspirin or another anti-platelet medication like Plavix. The problem is the other alternatives are much more costly.
Dr. Reynolds says, "This test might be useful to someone who wants to eliminate another $100 drug a month. A lot of these people are already taking many drugs."
The test only takes 15 minutes, and it is covered by Medicaid. People who are interested in testing their response to aspirin can ask their physician for a referral for the test.