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Aspirin use may reduce the risk of cervical cancer by nearly half

Researchers from the Roswell Park Cancer Institute (NY, USA) have suggested that frequent long-term aspirin use may reduce the risk of developing cervical cancer by almost half. Their results were published recently in the Journal of Lower Genital Tract Disease.

The first US-based study examining the association between regular acetaminophen or aspirin use and the risk of cervical cancer produced results that suggest frequent users of aspirin (those who used aspirin seven or more times a week, regardless of duration) had a 47% reduced risk of cervical cancer. Long-term frequent aspirin users (those with 5 or more years of frequent use) were found to have a 41% reduced risk of developing cervical cancer.

“Aspirin use remains an attractive cancer-prevention option, due to the fact that most people will be more likely to take a pill rather than make major lifestyle modifications such as quitting smoking, eating a healthy diet and engaging in physical activity. However, people need to talk to their doctor before starting an aspirin regimen,” explained lead researcher Kirsten Moysich of Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

The team examined 328 patients with cervical cancer alongside 1312 controls, matched by age. These individulas had previously enrolled in a case–control, hospital-based study of 26,831 patients who had been treated at the Roswell Park Cancer Institute, and who had completed the Patient Epidemiology Data System questionnaire between the years of 1982 and 1998. The frequency and duration of aspirin use was provided by the participants.

“Further research is needed,” concluded Moysich, “on the role of daily, long-term use of aspirin and acetaminophen as both cervical cancer chemopreventive agents and enhancement to standard treatment strategies postdiagnosis.”

Source: Roswell Park Cancer Institute press release