Senior ASPREE investigator, Professor Mark Nelson says a recent paper that links taking NSAID (Non Steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs) to a decrease in the risk of developing skin cancer underscores the importance of the ASPREE study.
“We welcome the findings of this study as the possibility of aspirin having cancer preventing properties is one of the rationales for conducting the ASPREE study,” said Professor Nelson.
“This study is an observational study and therefore cause and effect cannot be drawn, only association as the observations are likely confounded. The authors have corrected for known confounding variables but data is unlikely to be complete and unknown confounders will be at play. Generally the findings seem to be driven by non-selective NSAIDs with little or no aspirin specific benefits especially at low-doses.
“The unexpected similar findings in paracetamol also raises the possibility of confounding or a statistical anomaly. This study sits comfortably in with the bigger picture of cancer prevention and NSAIDs and provides additional rationale for interventional secondary prevention trials in skin cancer,” said Professor Nelson.
Article: “Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and the risk of skin cancer: A population-based case-control study.” Sigrún Alba Jóhannesdóttir, Ellen T. Chang, Frank Mehnert, Morten Schmidt, Anne Braae Olesen, Henrik Toft Sørensen. CANCER; Published Online: May 29, 2012 (DOI: 10.1002/cncr.27406).