Taking just one low-dose aspirin a day could decrease dramatically people’s chance of getting cancer and dying from the disease, according to a new British study.
London’s Queen Mary University’s cancer prevention centre has concluded the biggest study ever into the benefits of long-term aspirin use and found the drug has the ability to save 130,000 lives over 20 years, according to The Guardian.
The study, which was published in the Oxford Annals of Oncology, found that if people aged between 50 and 65 took an aspirin tablet a day for 10 years they could drastically reduce the risk of developing certain cancers.
“Prophylactic aspirin use for a minimum of five years at doses between 75 and 325 mg/day appears to have favourable benefit–harm profile; longer use is likely to have greater benefits,” the study’s authors concluded.
Professor Jack Cuzick, who headed up the study, told British journalists that an aspirin a day “looks to be the most important thing we can do to reduce cancer after stopping smoking and reducing obesity, and will probably be much easier to implement”.
According to the new research a regular low-dose aspirin dose could reduce bowel cancers by approximately 35 per cent and bowel cancer deaths by 40 per cent. It could also decrease stomach and oesophageal cancers by about 30 per cent and deaths from those diseases by up to 50 per cent.
Breast cancer risk could also be slashed by 10 per cent, with five per cent less deaths, and lung cancer cases could come down by five per cent, with deaths reduced by 15 per cent.
While aspirin has long been hailed a ‘wonder drug’ and its bloodclot-busting qualities are well known to lessen the risks of heart attacks and strokes, the UK study found there was still risks of bleeding in older people who took regular doses.
Professor Cuzick told the Annals of Oncology that people should consult their doctor before embarking on an aspirin-a-day regime. He did add, however, that he had been taking an aspirin each day for the past four years.