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Cancer Manag Res. 2018 Oct 29;10:5043-5051. doi: 10.2147/CMAR.S165498. eCollection 2018.

NSAID consumption and risk of acute myeloid leukemia: a national population-based case-control study.

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Department of Hematology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark,
Department of Clinical Epidemiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Aarhus, Denmark,
Department of Medicine, Holstebro Regional Hospital, Holstebro, Denmark,
Diagnostic Center, Silkeborg Regional Hospital, Silkeborg, Denmark.
Department of Hematology, The University Hospital Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Department of Hematology, Herlev University Hospital, Herlev, Denmark.
Department of Hematology, Aalborg University Hospital, Aalborg, Denmark.
Department of Clinical Medicine, Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark.
Department of Hematology, Odense University Hospital, Odense, Denmark.
Stanford University, School of Medicine, Stanford, CA, USA.
Department of Hematology, Roskilde University Hospital, Roskilde, Denmark.



Most cases of acute leukemia arise without identifiable risk factors. Studies investigating the impact of autoimmune diseases and infections on leukemogenesis have revealed conflicting results. If inflammation increases the risk of acute myeloid leukemia (AML), nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) use may decrease the risk of leukemia.


We conducted a case-control study of 3,053 patients with AML diagnosed between 2000 and 2013, who were registered in the Danish National Acute Leukemia Registry, and 30,530 population controls matched on sex and age. We identified prescriptions through the Danish National Health Service Prescription Database. We used conditional logistic regression analysis to compute ORs associating AML with NSAID use overall, in patients with inflammatory diseases, and for specific AML subtypes (de novo AML, AML related to previous hematological disease, ie, secondary AML [sAML], or therapy-related AML [tAML; exposed to previous cytotoxic therapy]).


Overall, NSAID use was not associated with a lower risk of AML (OR 1.1, 95% CI=1.0-1.2), de novo AML (OR 1.0, 95% CI=0.9-1.1), and sAML/tAML (OR 1.3, 95% CI=1.1-1.5). In addition, in patients with known inflammatory diseases, NSAIDs did not affect AML risk (OR 0.9, 95% CI=0.5-1.6). Number of prescriptions, type of NSAID, age, or sex did not influence the results.


In line with our recent findings that showed no association between autoimmune diseases and infections and de novo AML, NSAID use was not found to reduce the risk of AML.


NSAIDs; acute myeloid leukemia; inflammation; population controls; population-based; risk

Conflict of interest statement

Disclosure The authors report no conflicts of interest in this work.

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