Navigation Links
Aspirin: Scientists believe cancer prevention benefits outweigh harms
Date:8/5/2014

New research from Queen Mary University of London (QMUL) reveals taking aspirin can significantly reduce the risk of developing and dying from the major cancers of the digestive tract, i.e. bowel, stomach and oesophageal cancer.

For the first time, scientists have reviewed all the available evidence from many studies and clinical trials assessing both the benefits and harms of preventive use of aspirin. Conclusions of the study, funded by Cancer Research UK among others, are published today in the leading cancer journal Annals of Oncology*.

The researchers, led by Professor Jack Cuzick, Head of QMUL's Centre for Cancer Prevention (London, UK), found taking aspirin for 10 years could cut bowel cancer cases by around 35% and deaths by 40%. Rates of oesophageal and stomach cancers were cut by 30% and deaths from these cancers by 35-50%.

To reap the benefits of aspirin, the evidence shows people need to start taking a daily dose of 75-100 mg for at least five years and probably 10 years between the ages of 50 and 65. No benefit was seen whilst taking aspirin for the first three years, and death rates were only reduced after five years.

However, the research also warns taking aspirin long-term increases the risk of bleeding from the digestive tract, e.g. stomach bleeding. Amongst 60-year-old individuals who take daily aspirin for 10 years, the risk of digestive tract bleeds increases from 2.2% to 3.6%, and this could be life-threatening in a very small proportion (less than 5%) of people.

Overall, rates of serious or fatal gastrointestinal bleeding are very low under the age of 70, but increased sharply after that age. Another side effect of aspirin use is peptic ulcer, the risk of which is increased by 30-60%.

The study also uncovers uncertainty over the most appropriate dose of aspirin required to maximize the benefit / harm ratio, with doses varying between 75 mg to 325mg a day in different clinical trials and studies. It is also not clear whether taking aspirin for longer than 10 years will result in greater benefits.

Professor Jack Cuzick, Queen Mary University of London, comments: "It has long been known that aspirin one of the cheapest and most common drugs on the market can protect against certain types of cancer. But until our study, where we analysed all the available evidence, it was unclear whether the pros of taking aspirin outweighed the cons.

"Whilst there are some serious side effects that can't be ignored, taking aspirin daily looks to be the most important thing we can do to reduce cancer after stopping smoking and reducing obesity, and will probably be much easier to implement."

"Our study shows that if everyone aged between 50-65 started taking aspirin daily for at least 10 years, there would be a 9% reduction in the number of cancers, strokes and heart attacks overall in men and around 7% in women. The total number of deaths from any cause would also be lower, by about 4% over a 20-year period. The benefits of aspirin use would be most visible in the reduction in deaths due to cancer.

"The risk of bleeding depends on a number of known factors which people need to be aware of before starting regular aspirin and it would be advisable to consult with a doctor before embarking on daily medication."

Further research is now needed to define more clearly who will benefit most greatly from taking aspirin and who is most at risk of the bleeding side effects.


'/>"/>

Contact: Charli Scouller
c.scouller@qmul.ac.uk
020-788-27943
Queen Mary, University of London
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Scientists Shed Light on Link Between Depression, Dementia
2. Scientists pinpoint bladder cancer patients who could benefit from tumor-softening treatment
3. Scientists to study hereditary breast cancer to find BRCA1 treatment
4. Drexel Scientists Develop Compound to Stop Spread of Metastatic Cancer Cells
5. Scientists test nanoparticle alarm clock to awaken immune systems put to sleep by cancer
6. Brain Tumor Causes and Risk Factors Elude Scientists
7. Brain tumor causes and risk factors elude scientists
8. Mount Sinai Scientists and International Team Shed New Light on Schizophrenia in Largest Genomic Study Published to Date
9. NIH-supported scientists demonstrate very early formation of SIV reservoir
10. Scientists Snipped HIV Out of Human DNA
11. Scientists Discover New Way to Make Human Platelets
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/7/2016)... IL (PRWEB) , ... December 07, 2016 , ... Facial ... back this holiday season by donating a portion of proceeds to two local organizations: ... North Chicago Animal Control & Friends is a team of authorized and trained ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... The medical profession is well aware that heart ... major study analyzing heart attacks among 138,602 people recorded a 35% higher number of ... would all agree of course–no time of year is a good time for a ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Maureen McLaughlin, LA.c., a certified acupuncturist, is ... Connecticut (RMACT). McLaughlin brings nearly 20 years of experience with fertility patients to ... their family building goals. Acupuncture helps fertility patients by supporting the ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... “Fred Rides a Train” ... Day that follows. , “Fred Rides a Train” is the creation of published ... stories since her teen years in Michigan. The "Fred, the Dog" series is her ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... CA (PRWEB) , ... December 07, 2016 , ... NuevaCare, ... Francisco Peninsula region, is proud to announce new city-specific pages as part of its ... for the elderly, they often look, first, for local agencies serving their city. The ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/5/2016)... 2016 United Kingdom Ophthalmic Diagnostic Equipment ... new report, "United Kingdom Ophthalmic Diagnostic Equipment Market ... the United Kingdom Ophthalmic Diagnostic Equipment market. The ... volume (in units) and average prices (USD) within ... Ultrasound Imaging Systems, Corneal Topography Systems, Ophthalmoscopes, Perimeters, ...
(Date:12/5/2016)... -- Spain Glaucoma Surgery Devices Market Outlook to 2022 ... Devices Market Outlook to 2022", provides key market data ... provides value, in millions of US dollars, volume (in ... Canaloplasty Micro Catheters and Glaucoma Drainage Devices. The ... for each of these market segements, and global corporate-level ...
(Date:12/5/2016)... -- Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. (Nasdaq: SGMO ), the ... and manufacturing data that support SB-525, its gene therapy program ... of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) being held in ... 2016. "We have developed an improved gene therapy ... highly competitive, and we remain on track to file an ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: