Colon Cancer Risk Lower With Regular Aspirin Use
Aspirin has been called a kind of miracle drug.
Additionally, among patients older than 50 years, regular aspirin use may have prevented 33 colorectal cancers per 100 000 person-years among those who had not undergone lower endoscopy, as well as 18 colorectal cancers per 100 000 person-years among those who had. "Unlike most of the time, when you are trying to find early stages of cancer, we can prevent this disease from even happening by removing polyps", said Dr. Thomas McGarrity, chief of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology.
Results suggest that the effectiveness of aspirin in preventing CRC is dose-dependent.
For protection against bowel cancer, it seemed that a 0.5 to 1.5 standard dose of tablets (325mg) per week (roughly equivalent to a daily low-dose aspirin), for more than five years, was required. However, findings indicate that substantially more cases were prevented among people who did not undergo screening.
The risk decreased by 15 per cent for gastrointestinal cancers - including tumours of the gullet, stomach, intestine and pancreas.
To investigate the impact of aspirin use in a broader perspective of numerous cancers, the scientists examined two separate United States studies - the Nurses' Health Study (1980-2010) and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (1986-2012) - containing data on nearly 136,000 participants over the course of 32 years. Further, they noted that because the study populations were largely non-Hispanic white, the findings may not be generalizable to other races. "Beyond 5 years, we observed a progressively greater reduction in the risk for gastrointestinal tract cancers and colorectal cancers", the researchers wrote.
Aspirin has always been known to confer various benefits when it comes to health, and now a new study suggests the medication could lower people's overall risk of developing cancer.
Aspirin is thought to be affective against cancer because it makes blood less prone to the masking influence of blood platelets that render cancerous cells practically indiscernible to the immune system.
The risk of breast cancer, advanced prostate, or lung cancer was not associated with regular aspirin use. During this time, 20,414 cancers were found in 88,084 women, and 7,571 cancers were found among 47,881 men.
The apparent benefit of aspirin for bowel cancer appeared to be dose-dependent.
The research is reported in the journal JAMA Oncology. "But this should be done with the caveat that patients be well informed about the potential side effects of regular aspirin treatment and continue their regular screening tests".
Regular aspirin use "could prevent close to 30,000 gastrointestinal tract tumors in the USA each year", said the study.
So what's "regular" aspirin use, as described in the study?
People who are wondering if they should start taking aspirin should first talk to their physician.
Limitations to the study include that results of an observational study, such as this, are not as definitive as those of a randomized clinical trial. Among the potential problems are gastrointestinal bleeding and stomach ulcers. You can buy it over the counter, it relieves pain, reduces inflammation, protects against heart attack and stroke, and now researchers say it may be able to prevent some types of cancer.