Aspirin, by this logic

In small doses, aspirin and other NSAIDs are helpful painkillers.  In fact, small doses of aspirin therapy prevents lethal heart attacks and strokes and saves thousands, possibly millions of lives annually.

If aspirin were evaluated like radiation exposure, the estimated number of deaths due to taking the recommended dose, which is 1/10 the lethal dose*, would be 1 in 10 people.
If 1 in 10 people taking aspirin died, this would be up to hundreds of millions of people annually worldwide, which is clearly not the case.  Aspirin is the most widely taken painkiller worldwide, and has been for hundreds of years.

Can you imagine if every product were regulated like radiation exposure?  There simply would not be any pharmaceuticals, and millions of lives would be lost or have a lower quality of life.  For that matter, there would not be any water, food, or air (since overdose of anything at some level would kill you).

This method is called the linear non-threshold (LNT) method, which is the illogical method used to scare people about the health effects of radiation exposure.  It assumes that there is no threshold at which something is possibly not damaging or may even be beneficial.  By the same method, millions upon millions worldwide should die due to chronically living on planet earth, where our own bodies, our food (especially bananas and potatoes!), the earth (especially marble and granite), the ocean, etc. all contain radioactive decaying elements.

Our adoption of LNT has halted medical and energy progress, and cost millions of dollars.  Because of our adoption of LNT, our natural environment is considered toxic when it may in fact be beneficial or even necessary for all forms of life.  And, it has created lots of unnecessary fear and fodder for sensationalist media.

*Aspirin overdoses kill around 50 people per year in the USA.  A lethal dose is about 34 g, roughly 10 times the recommended dose, which is up to 4g/day.  FDA Report: http://www.fda.gov/ohrms/dockets/ac/02/briefing/3882B2_02_McNeil-NSAID.htm#_Toc18761780


2 comments

  1. Interesting attempt at supporting a pro-nuclear position.

    A suggestion: If you claim that you are making a logical conclusion, try to logically state how you are doing so.

    You did not explain at all how the statistics of 'saves thousands, possibly millions of lives annually' and '50 deaths a year' correlate to 'if aspirin were evaluated like radiation exposure, the estimated number of deaths due to taking 1/10 the lethal dose (ie the recommended dose) would be 1 in 10 people.'

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  2. Point taken and the info about aspirin has been moved to a footnote to remove confusion for those distracted by the extra info. Otherwise, the statistics of aspirin saving lives is not supposed to correlate to the estimates of death that would occur using LNT. The positive statistics on aspirin are there to show the dramatic contrast between the negative LNT estimates to the reality that aspirin is extremely beneficial worldwide.

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