Now, For Aspirin's Next Magic Trick

Regular use of aspirin may sharply cut the odds of developing colon cancer, according to a study published in the Dec. 5 New England Journal of Medicine. Based on data from 662,400 people tracked by the American Cancer Society from 1982 to 1988, researchers led by Dr. Michael Thun found that those who took aspirin 16 or more times a month for a year had half the risk of developing fatal colon cancer as nonusers.

Two earlier studies also found a reduced risk among frequent users of aspirin or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, but a third found that an aspirin a day actually boosted the odds of colon cancer somewhat.

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