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Aspirin Or NSAIDs Will not Prevent Colorectal Cancer

e highest rate of colorectal cancer compared with other races.

In recent years, some progress has been made to detect and treat colorectal cancer earlier through screening and early removal of polyps. In 2002, the Task Force strongly recommended that clinicians screen men and women age 50 and older for colorectal cancer.

Task Force leaders stress the evidence on the merits of screening but urge caution on taking preventive medicine for colorectal cancer. 'Individuals taking high doses of aspirin or NSAIDs to prevent colorectal cancer should be aware of the potential harms and discuss them with their clinician,' said Dr. Calonge.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force is an independent panel of experts in prevention and primary care. The Task Force conducts rigorous, impartial assessments of the scientific evidence for the effectiveness of a broad range of clinical preventive services, including screening, counseling and preventive medications. Its recommendations are considered the gold standard for clinical preventive services. AHRQ provides technical and administrative support, but the recommendations of the panel are its own.

The Task Force based its conclusions on a report from a research team led by David Moher, M.D., at AHRQ's Evidence-based Practice Center at the University of Ottawa in Canada.

The Task Force grades the strength of the evidence as 'A' (strongly recommends), 'B' (recommends), 'C' (no recommendation for or against), 'D' (recommends against) or 'I' (insufficient evidence to recommend for or against screening). The Task Force recommends against the routine use of aspirin and NSAIDs to prevent colorectal cancer in individuals at average risk for the disease (a 'D' recommendation).

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