Recent Blog Articles
New Harvard tool helps fact-check cancer claims
Hand pain from arthritis? This may help
Polio: What parents need to know now
Ketamine for treatment-resistant depression: When and where is it safe?
Have lupus? What to know about birth control
Screening at home for memory loss: Should you try it?
Travel tummy troubles: Here’s how to prevent or soothe them
Easy, delicious summer veggie meals will help stretch your food budget
Tracking viruses: The best clues may be in the sewer
Promising therapy if PSA rises after prostate cancer surgery
By the way, doctor: Could aspirin cause hearing loss?
Q. I am 85 and have taken an 81-mg aspirin each day for decades for heart attack prevention. Recently, I noticed these words on the label: "Stop using if you get ringing in your ears or loss of hearing." Should I be worried?
A. In a word, no.
In the body, aspirin gets converted into a chemical called salicylic acid, so the side effect that the label is referring to is sometimes called salicylism, or more simply, aspirin poisoning. Very high levels of aspirin in the blood can have toxic effects. Tinnitus — a ringing or whistling noise in the ear — and hearing loss are among them. But there's no risk of that happening at an 81-mg dose.
To continue reading this article, you must log in.
Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School.
- Research health conditions
- Check your symptoms
- Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
- Find the best treatments and procedures for you
- Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
I'd like to receive access to Harvard Health Online for only $4.99 a month.Sign Me Up
Already a member? Login ».
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles.
No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.
Free Healthbeat Signup
Get the latest in health news delivered to your inbox!