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Aspirin will be investigated in the world’s largest clinical trial of treatments for patients hospitalised with COVID-19. The RECOVERY trial is taking place in 176 hospital sites across the UK, and has so far recruited over 16,000 patients. Patients with COVID-19 are at higher risk of blood clots forming in their blood vessels. Platelets seem to be hyperreactive in COVID-19 and may be involved in the clotting complications. As an antiplatelet agent, aspirin may reduce the risk of blood clots in patients with COVID-19.

Aspirin pill

It is anticipated that at least 2,000 patients will be randomly allocated to receive aspirin 150 mg daily plus usual standard-of-care, and results will be compared with at least 2,000 patients who receive standard-of-care on its own. The main outcome RECOVERY will assess is mortality after 28 days. Other outcomes include the impact on hospital stay and the need for ventilation. It is likely to be several months before there is enough evidence to conclude whether aspirin has a significant benefit in COVID-19 patients.

Professor Peter Horby, co-Chief Investigator of the RECOVERY trial, said

We felt it was particularly important to add aspirin to the trial since there is a clear rationale for believing that it might be beneficial and it is safe, inexpensive and widely available. We are looking for medicines for COVID-19 that can be used immediately by anyone, anywhere in the world. We do not know if aspirin is such a medicine but we will find out.

Read the full story on the RECOVERY website