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Oncology Study Shows Aspirin May Help Prevent Colon Cancer

Posted by floriza in Oncology

A new oncology study published in The Lancet shows that people who take aspirin daily for a period of two years or more can lower their risk of hereditary colon cancer by as much as 63 percent. The researchers studied 861 patients who were found to be high risk for colorectal cancer.

Other studies have shown that aspirin can cut cancer risk. A 2009 study published in the British Journal of Cancer indicated that stomach cancer risk can be lowered by one-third. An Oxford University study found that aspirin could lower death rates for all types of cancer. Aspirin, of course, has long been used as a preventative measure for cardiovascular disease.

The oncology researchers pointed out that they are as yet unsure as to the best dosage of aspirin to gain the effects of cancer prevention. More studies need to be conducted to obtain more information about the correlation between aspirin and colorectal cancer prevention.

Does Aspirin Cause Side Effects?

The problem is that aspirin can cause other issues. Additional oncology studies have shown that it may increase the risk of developing macular degeneration, a condition that can lead to blindness. It may also increase the risk of ulcers, strokes, and gastrointestinal bleeding. Some oncologists have pointed out, however, that the side effects of aspirin are not life-threatening (not even blindness), while cancer often results in death.

The only potentially life-threatening side effect of aspirin is bleeding in the brain, but this appears to occur very rarely. Many oncologists believe the benefits of a daily dose of aspirin greatly outweigh the risks, particularly if there is a genetic risk of cancer or cardiovascular disease.

Symptoms and Causes of Colorectal Cancer

Oncologists recommend that people begin to be routinely screened for colorectal cancer (which includes cancer of the colon and cancer of the rectum) at the age of 50. Screenings generally involve a colonoscopy. This is because the symptoms of colorectal cancer rarely show up until the disease is in its later, more dangerous stages.

Symptoms of colorectal cancer include persistent blood in the stool, persistent diarrhea or constipation, and weight loss that has nothing to do with a change in diet.

The causes of colorectal cancer are unknown, but there are several known factors that put people at greater risk for the disease. These include obesity, diabetes, a family history of colon cancer, a high fat diet with little fiber, lack of exercise, African American descent, a history of polyps in the colon, colitis or Crohn’s disease, and alcoholism.

Facilities offering medical services in oncology in New Jersey can provide colorectal cancer screenings and treatments.

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