Even before the time of Hippocrates, willow extracts, which contain salicylates, were used in medicine as analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and antipyretic agents. Acetylsalicylic acid was isolated in the mid-19th century, and since 1899 when it was patented, aspirin has enjoyed global popularity. The relatively recent discovery of its antiplatelet activity has also led to the widespread use of aspirin as an antistroke and cardioprotective agent, but the list of its medical applications continues to increase.1
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