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J Gastrointest Oncol. 2018 Dec;9(6):1133-1137. doi: 10.21037/jgo.2018.08.13.

The relationship between aspirin use and mortality in colorectal cancer.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine, Dayton, OH, USA.
Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology, Dayton VA Medical Center, Dayton, OH, USA.



Aspirin use lengthens survival in patients with colorectal cancer (CRC). We aimed to add to the evidence examining this relationship and to compare the survival benefit between aspirin started before CRC diagnosis with those started after CRC diagnosis.


The study involved 173 consecutive patients who had a histopathologic diagnosis of colorectal carcinoma between 1996 and 2014. The electronic medical record was used to collect data on demographic characteristics (age, sex, and race), family history of cancer, use or non-use of aspirin before and after cancer diagnosis, cancer stage at diagnosis, and days from cancer diagnosis to death. Patients were divided into aspirin using and non-aspirin using groups.


Aspirin users (ASAU, n=90) were older than non-aspirin users (NASAU, n=83; 70.8±9.1 vs. 66.2±10.2 years; P=0.004). The two groups were similar in sex, race, and family history of cancer, but the non-users of aspirin were more likely to have stage III or stage IV CRC (NASAU =57.5%; ASAU =38.6%; P=0.014). Aspirin users survived more than twice the number of days than non-users (ASAU median =941 days; NASAU median =384 days; P=0.003). Patients who used aspirin only before their CRC diagnosis had a short survival period from diagnosis to death (median =149).


Our findings support the relationship of aspirin use and duration of use with enhanced survival in patients with CRC. Physicians may want to recommend that patients at increased risk for CRC and those already diagnosed, but not yet on aspirin, start an aspirin regimen.


Malignancy; preventive; risk

Conflict of interest statement

Conflicts of Interest: The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.

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