Throughout the world we pop more than 200 billion of these little white pills every year. Aspirin is effective not only against everyday ailments, such as headaches and fever, but also as a preventative treatment for heart attacks, strokes, and even some types of cancers. Add to this its beneficiary role in a host of other conditions from Alzheimer's to gum disease, and you have a medicine of unparalleled importance to humanity, not to mention big business. Yet until 1971 we did not even know how Aspirin worked. In this fascinating and informative book Diarmuid Jeffreys follows the surprising and dramatic story of the drug from its origins in ancient Egypt, through its industrial development at the end of the nineteenth century and its key role in the great flu pandemic of 1918 to its subsequent exploitation by the pharmaceutical conglomerates.
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