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Common painkillers may reduce ovarian cancer risk

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Scientists have found that frequent use of a conventional analgesic can reduce the risk of developing ovarian cancer.

A new study has found that taking a daily aspirin may reduce a woman’s chance of developing the disease, often called the “silent killer” because most sufferers don’t notice symptoms in the early stages.

“The results of this study suggest that frequent aspirin use may reduce the risk of developing ovarian cancer, regardless of a woman’s genetic predisposition to ovarian cancer,” the researchers wrote.

The team pooled data from eight studies conducted by the Ovarian Cancer Society Consortium between 1995 and 2009 in the US, UK and Australia.

Their analysis included 4,476 patients with non-cystic ovarian cancer (a rare form of the disease) and 6,659 participants who did not have cancer, aged 49 to 66 years.

Among participants with cancer, 13% took aspirin frequently, compared with 15% of participants in the group without the disease.

The researchers defined frequent aspirin use as daily or infrequent use of the drug for six months or longer.

They assessed patients’ susceptibility to cancer using a polygenic measure, which measures the likelihood of developing the disease based on genes.

“Frequent aspirin use was associated with a 13 percent lower risk of non-cystic ovarian cancer. The risk reduction was greater for high-grade serous tumors and endometrial tumors,” the researchers report in the paper.

These results indicate that a genetic predisposition to ovarian cancer, based on currently identified common genetic variants, does not alter the protective association between frequent aspirin use and ovarian cancer.

They also found that patients’ polygenic scores did not affect the protective properties of aspirin.

“Further work should continue to explore the role of aspirin use in preventing ovarian cancer in high-risk individuals,” the researchers explained.

Researchers have found that aspirin reduces the risk of certain types of cancer and increases the chances of survival for breast cancer. However, previous studies have also warned that frequent use of pain relievers can cause internal bleeding in people over 60 years of age.

While a daily dose of aspirin is recommended for some if they are at genetic risk for heart disease, another study found it causes heart problems in people with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. This was also the case if they smoked or were obese.

Source: Sun

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