Author Affiliations: Department of Medicine and Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, College of Physicians and Surgeons, and the Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, New York.
Even before the time of Hippocrates, willow extracts, which contain salicylates, were used in medicine as analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and antipyretic agents. Acetylsalicylic acid was isolated in the mid-19th century, and since 1899 when it was patented, aspirin has enjoyed global popularity. The relatively recent discovery of its antiplatelet activity has also led to the widespread use of aspirin as an antistroke and cardioprotective agent, but the list of its medical applications continues to increase.1
Neugut AI. Aspirin as Adjuvant Therapy for Colorectal CancerA Promising New Twist for an Old Drug. JAMA. 2009;302(6):688-689. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.1145