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chronic ischemic small vessel disease in brain

recently had CT to check cause of headache. Clear for that, but showed chronic ischemic small vessel disease and beginnings of arterial blockage. Doc said it was due to natural aging (I'm 64) and to start taking low dose aspirin daily. I take  generic sectral beta blocker for quite a few years now....not for high blood pressure but pre mature ventricular beats. Had nuclear stress test and complete heart work up last year and everything was fine.

Researching small vessel disease sounds really scary to me, but what I read about taking low dose aspirin does too. Is there an alternative to aspirin? I take prilosec for 6 months now and was hoping to taper off soon, but doc said if you have reflux issues to make sure and take the prilosec with aspirin.

I don't believe vessel disease in my case is due to high blood pressure. One day it can be 136\80 and another 106\60. Last time it was 97\ over something. I'm not a diabetic, however heart disease and strokes took out my Dad and most of his side of the family. That was in the days of everyone smoking and drinking.

So do I suck it up and take the aspirin or is there something else I can do. Not that I expect an answer. Usually no one responds.
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