Medicine: Buffer Off?

Plain aspirin is just as good as the more expensive buffered variety. This conclusion, which will be a surprise to many physicians as well as lay viewers of TV commercials, was reported last week in the New England Journal of Medicine by two independent medical investigators after new-studies.

Major trouble with previous tests in which some medical researchers thought they detected advantages in buffering the aspirin with antacids, said New York Medical College's Dr. Robert C. Batterman, was that they relied on patients' faulty memories. To rule out this and other sources of error. Dr. Batterman did "double blind" tests: identical-looking tablets,...

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