Q. Why isn’t there a soluble 325 mg aspirin tablet available in the US? I carry two 325 mg tablets in my coin purse at all times and have read that one should take aspirin at the first sign of a heart attack, while simultaneously calling 911.
Is it better to dissolve the aspirin in my mouth or in water before ingesting it? Would soluble aspirin be more effective? Or is simply swallowing one or two aspirin with a glass of water equally effective?
A. We are not sure why soluble aspirin has never caught on in this country as it has in Europe (by the brand names Aspro and Disprin). Dissolvable aspirin is available in the U.S. only in combination products such as Alka-Seltzer or BC Powder.
You may be pleased to learn, however, that simply chewing a standard 325 mg aspirin tablet for 30 seconds and then swallowing it with four ounces of water is the best way to get its effects quickly (American Journal of Cardiology, Aug. 15, 1999). This technique produces measurable anti-clotting benefits within five minutes, compared to 12 minutes after swallowing an intact pill. If chewing regular aspirin is challenging, you can buy flavored chewable low-dose aspirin and achieve a similar effect.
There is more information on aspirin in our free Guide to Key Aspirin Information.