The results of a study led by Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) investigators support evidence from previous studies suggesting the regular use of aspirin can reduce the risk of developing primary liver cancer – also called hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Their report analyzing data from two long-term epidemiologic studies appears in JAMA Oncology and finds that regular aspirin use – taking two or more 325 mg tablets a week for five years or more – led to a significantly reduced risk of developing HCC, which is the second leading cause of cancer death worldwide.
“Regular use of aspirin led to significantly lower risk of developing HCC, compared to infrequent or no aspirin use, and we also found that the risk declined progressively with increasing aspirin dose and duration of use,” says Tracey Simon, MD, a research fellow in the MGH Division of Gastroenterology, lead author of the report. “Since regular aspirin use carries the risk of increased bleeding, the next step should be to study its impact in populations with established liver disease, since that group is already at risk for primary liver cancer.”
While HCC is relatively rare, its incidence in the U.S. has increased over the past 40 years
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