Saturday, October 29, 2011

Popping aspirins may cut risk of cancer

Today, Saturday, October 29, 2011, Page 26, Science
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http://www.todayonline.com/Science/EDC111029-0000137/Popping-aspirins-may-cut-risk-of-cancer
By
THE GUARDIAN, 04:46 AM Oct 29, 2011



PHOTO: That was a balanced judgment based on weighing risks and benefits. I know I might get an ulcer or a cerebral bleed but I’d rather not have a heart attack, stroke or cancer. That’s my choice. Professor John Burn of Newcastle University.
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LONDON - Some people with a family history of cancer could halve their risk of developing the disease by taking daily doses of aspirin, according to the results of a 10-year trial of the treatment.

The study shows that regularly taking the medicine cuts the risk of bowel cancer by more than 60 per cent in those with a particular genetic predisposition to get the disease - as well as reducing the risk of other hereditary cancers.

Scientists who led the study said people with several family members with cancers other than breast, blood and prostate might be advised to start taking aspirin daily from the age of 45.



PHOTO: Taking an aspirin every day cuts the risk of dying from a range of common cancers.
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http://fatewebs.blogspot.com/2010_12_01_archive.html


They said those without a family history of the disease might also consider doing so, but that they should make a personal assessment of the risks and benefits and get medical advice.

Anyone thinking of taking the drug regularly should consult their doctor first.

The trial involved people with Lynch syndrome, a genetic abnormality that predisposes carriers to develop bowel cancer and other solid organ cancers including endometrial, ovarian, stomach, kidney, oesophageal, brain and skin tumours.

The condition affects at least one in 1,000 people.

Carriers are around 10 times as likely to develop cancer and often do so at a young age.

Professor John Burn of Newcastle University, who led the study, estimated that if all 30,000 or so people with Lynch syndrome in the United Kingdom were to start taking two aspirin tablets a day then some 10,000 cancers would be prevented over the next 30 years, saving about a thousand lives.



PHOTO: Start taking two aspirin tablets a day then some 10,000 cancers would be prevented over the next 30 years, saving about a thousand lives.
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http://nancynearphiladelphia.blogspot.com/2011/02/aspirin-for-valentines-day.html


The downside of the treatment is that around an extra thousand people would develop stomach ulcers as a side-effect.

The most common side effects associated with taking aspirin are gastrointestinal ulcers and stomach bleeding. There is also a very small increased risk of haemorrhagic stroke, in which a blood vessel in the brain bursts.

Prof Burn added that he takes low-dose aspirin tablets as a preventative measure. "That was a balanced judgment based on weighing risks and benefits. I know I might get an ulcer or a cerebral bleed but I'd rather not have a heart attack, stroke or cancer. That's my choice."

The researchers will launch a website to recruit 3,000 people with Lynch syndrome worldwide to take part in a five-year trial to determine the best dose of aspirin to take.
By THE GUARDIAN, 04:46 AM Oct 29, 2011



PHOTO: In this photo illustration, aspirin is displayed in heart shape. Cardiologists at UK have found that not everyone benefits from taking a daily aspirin to prevent heart attack. (Charles Bertram/Lexington Herald-Leader/MCT)
Photo: MBR, Charles Bertram / Lexington Herald-Leader

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http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/article/The-little-pill-that-battles-cancer-and-wins-997124.php


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