Efficacy of aspirin plus extended-release dipyridamole in preventing recurrent stroke in high-risk populations

Arch Neurol. 2005 Mar;62(3):403-8. doi: 10.1001/archneur.62.3.403.


Objective: To assess the efficacy of aspirin plus extended-release dipyridamole compared with aspirin alone for the prevention of recurrent stroke among high-risk groups.

Design: A post hoc analysis was conducted using data from the European Stroke Prevention Study 2. Rates of annual strokes and vascular events were determined for the aspirin plus extended-release dipyridamole group (n = 1650) and the aspirin-only group (n = 1649), and were stratified by risk subgroup and univariate risk factors. Stroke models from the Framingham Study and the Stroke Prognostic Instrument II were applied to subjects in the European Stroke Prevention Study 2 to categorize patients into risk groups.

Results: Compared with aspirin alone, aspirin plus extended-release dipyridamole demonstrated a more pronounced efficacy in reducing the risk for stroke and vascular events among patients younger than 70 years; those with hypertension, prior stroke, or transient ischemic attack; current smokers; and those with any prior cardiovascular disease. Relative hazard reductions favored the combination of aspirin plus extended-release dipyridamole, and were greatest for the high-risk Framingham Study group and the moderate-risk Stroke Prognostic Instrument II subgroup.

Conclusion: Aspirin plus extended-release dipyridamole is more effective than aspirin alone at preventing stroke, and the difference in efficacy increases in higher-risk patients.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aspirin / administration & dosage*
  • Delayed-Action Preparations / administration & dosage
  • Dipyridamole / administration & dosage*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Risk Factors
  • Secondary Prevention
  • Stroke / drug therapy*
  • Stroke / epidemiology
  • Stroke / prevention & control


  • Delayed-Action Preparations
  • Dipyridamole
  • Aspirin