Other highlights in the July 6 JNCI

Long-term Use of Aspirin, NSAIDs Associated With Decreased Risk of Prostate Cancer

A new study has found that long-duration regular use of aspirin or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen) may be associated with a reduced risk of prostate cancer.

Use of aspirin and other NSAIDs has been consistently associated with a reduced risk of colorectal cancer in epidemiological studies, and aspirin reduced risk of colorectal polyp recurrence in two randomized trials. There has also been some evidence from laboratory and epidemiological studies that NSAIDs might influence prostate carcinogenesis, although the association is unclear.

To determine whether use of NSAIDs is associated with a reduced risk of prostate cancer, Eric J. Jacobs, Ph.D., of the American Cancer Society in Atlanta, and colleagues studied more than 70,000 men participating in the American Cancer Society's Cancer Prevention Study II Nutrition Cohort. During the follow-up from 1992 to 1993 through August 2001, 4,853 cases of prostate cancer were diagnosed among these men.

Current use of aspirin or any NSAID was not associated with prostate cancer risk. However, long-duration regular use (30 or more pills per month for 5 or more years) of aspirin or any NSAID was associated with an estimated 18% reduction in the relative risk of prostate cancer. In the population studied, the age-adjusted rate of prostate cancer was 1,013 cases per 100,000 person-years among men who never reported NSAID use compared with 847 cases per 100,000 person-years among long-duration NSAID users.

"In this large prospective study, long-duration regular NSAID use was associated with a modest reduction in prostate cancer risk," the authors write. "In our view, it would be premature to consider reduced risk of prostate cancer a benefit of using aspirin or other NSAIDs because to date there are relatively few large observational studies and no randomized trials a

Contact: Sarah L. Zielinski
Journal of the National Cancer Institute

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