Association found between frequent aspirin usage and reduced risk of ovarian cancer

August 2022 Science Nalinee Pathak

Meta-analysis of ovarian cancer data reveals that the frequent use of aspirin is associated with a reduced risk of ovarian cancer. The findings from the study were recently published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Aspirin is an over-the-counter drug routinely used for various pharmacological activities such as analgesic, antipyretic, anti-inflammatory etc. Its use has been believed to reduce the risk of ovarian cancer. However, no study has comprehensively addressed it. Hurwitz et al. have performed a meta-analysis of ovarian cancer data and investigated the relationship between aspirin use and ovarian cancer.

Meta-analysis

The researchers analysed data from 491,651 patients with ovarian cancer risk using nine cohorts from the ovarian cancer cohort consortium. Among these participants, between 9.8% to 38% of patients were frequent aspirin users (6-7 days/week). Further, after a follow-up of 4.6 to 14.3 years, 2600 patients were diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Additionally, the study included eight case-control cohorts (n=5726, ovarian cases and n=8027, control cases) having 5.6% to 29.8% frequent aspirin users.

Main Findings

Meta-analysis of the data found a 10% reduction in ovarian cancer risk in the cohort studies (hazard ratio, 0.90; 95% CI, 0.81-1.01) and a 16% reduction in the case-control cohort (odds ratio, 0.84; 95% CI, 0.72-0.98). Taken together, frequent aspirin use was associated with a 13% decrease in the risk of ovarian cancer across subgroups. Notably, this risk reduction was not related to patients with endometriosis.

Conclusion

These findings demonstrate the benefit associated with the use of aspirin and how it can be used as a preventive drug for patients with a risk of ovarian cancer.

Reference

Hurwitz LM, Townsend MK, Jordan SJ, et al. Modification of the association between frequent aspirin use and ovarian cancer risk: A meta-analysis using individual-level data from two ovarian cancer consortia. J Clin Oncol. Published online July 22, 2022.

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