Many doctors already recommend taking an aspirin a day to decrease the risk of stroke and heart attack, but recent cancer news indicates that swallowing an aspirin a day may also decrease certain types of cancer risk.
Cutting Cancer Risk
British researchers at the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine in London have found strong evidence that people age 50 to 65 could cut their risk of contracting colon, esophageal and stomach cancers by taking one baby aspirin (75 to 81 milligrams) a day for 10 years.
“Taking aspirin daily looks to be the most important thing we can do to reduce cancer after stopping smoking and reducing obesity,” one British researcher told USA Today.
Beware of Side Effects
However, both study researchers and other cancer experts recommend talking to your doctor before beginning a preventative aspirin regimen. Aspirin can cause gastrointestinal bleeding and may cause other adverse and potentially dangerous side effects, particularly when taken with certain other drugs such as blood thinners.
Also of concern, a study reported by Newser.com found that long-term aspirin therapy “may be a factor in macular degeneration,” an age-related eye disease that can result in eventual blindness. Due to the increased risk of aspirin-related bleeding with age, British researchers generally recommended halting daily aspirin therapy after 10 years.
Benefits Outweigh Side Effects
“There was clear evidence that the benefits vastly outweigh the side effects,” study leader Dr. Jack Cuzick told the New York Times.
While cancer news shows support for use of long-term aspirin therapy to prevent cancer growing, questions remain. We recommend talking to your Issels cancer treatment team to see if aspirin therapy is right for you.
One in every 640 adults between the ages of 20 and 39 is a childhood cancer survivor, according to the U.S. Institute of Medicine. About 70% of those cancer survivors will experience serious, life-altering health problems as adults that are directly related to their cancer battle and, more often, the cancer treatment they underwent decades ago. To these childhood cancer survivors it seems a cruel twist of fate that cancer up-ends their lives not once, but twice.
A recent University of Florida study on the long-term effects of childhood cancer found that many survivors suffer physical, mental or social effects as adults that can drastically impair daily function and quality of life. Working with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Florida researchers analyzed data from 1,667 childhood cancer survivors.
According to a report on Medical News Today, “The most common symptoms the survivors reported were head pain, back and neck pain, pain in other parts of the body, sensation abnormalities, and disfigurement” (such as hair loss). Other symptoms included heart problems, lung problems, mobility issues, learning and memory issues, depression and anxiety. Seventy percent of childhood cancer survivors reported at least one negative adult-onset symptom with 25% reporting six or more. With each additional symptom, survivors reported a noticeable decrease in their quality of life.
It is possible that using integrated immunotherapy to bolster the immune system during and after childhood cancer treatment, either as a primary treatment or with traditional treatment may decrease adult-onset symptoms for childhood cancer survivors. There may also be benefit in continuing immunotherapy treatments beyond initial cancer treatment to optimize immune system benefits throughout life.
In 2003, the U.S. Institute of Medicine released a report on the special challenges faced by childhood cancer survivors after they entered their adult years. While citing a remarkable 78% improvement in survival rates since 1970, the report noted that, “More than two-thirds of childhood cancer survivors will face complications, disabilities or adverse outcomes directly related to their cancer, its treatment or both.”
As we’ve been discussing in social media lately, childhood cancer survivors frequently face serious medical problems and chronic illnesses during their adult years that can significantly diminish their quality of life and even decrease their life expectancy. A new movement designed to call attention to the unique challenges faced by survivors of childhood and adolescent cancer is building steam. The Society of Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology (SAYAO) recently held its first annual meeting at the University of California at Irvine with the goal of building awareness and improving the quality of life for childhood cancer survivors.
Not long ago, we reported on a new St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital study that linked the use of chemotherapy to treat childhood cancers to the survivors’ development of chronic, life threatening diseases during their adult years. Increasing the severity of the threat, the St. Jude’s study found that 90% of the heart conditions and 55% of the lung problems that childhood cancer survivors developed went undetected until the condition had reached an advanced stage.
SAYAO is calling on the cancer community to address the long-term issues of cancer survival. Non-toxic immunotherapy treatment at an alternative cancer treatment center may offer an important avenue not only to effective initial treatment but also to improved lifelong outcomes.