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Epidemiology. 2000 Jul;11(4):376-81.

Reduced incidence of colorectal adenoma among long-term users of nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs: a pooled analysis of published studies and a new population-based study.

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Centro Español de Investigación Farmacoepidemiológica, Madrid, Spain.


Chronic treatment with nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) has been associated with a reduced risk of colorectal cancer, but less information is available on the relationship between NSAIDs and colorectal adenoma. We carried out a population-based cohort study with nested case-control analysis to determine the association between the use of aspirin and individual NSAIDs and the risk of colorectal adenoma. The General Practice Research Database in the United Kingdom was the source population. We followed 943,903 persons who were 40-79 years of age and free of colorectal adenoma or other cancer at baseline, which varied between January 1994 and September 1997. There were 1,864 incident cases of colorectal adenoma, for an incidence rate of 6.8 per 10,000 person-years. Compared with non-users, long-term users (1 year and more) of nonaspirin NSAIDs had a 40% decreased risk of colorectal adenoma (relative risk = 0.6; 95% confidence interval = 0.4-0.9). Long-term NSAID use was still associated with a reduced risk 1 year after stopping NSAID treatment. Use of most individual NSAIDs conferred a reduced risk. The risk of developing colorectal adenoma was reduced in long-term users of aspirin at doses of 300 mg daily (relative risk = 0.6; 95% confidence interval = 0.4-1.0), but reduced risk was not evident with daily doses of 75 and 150 mg aspirin. These results add further support to the value of NSAIDs as a candidate for primary prevention of colorectal tumors.

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