Frequent aspirin use is associated with a decreased risk of ovarian cancer, according to a meta-analysis published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Researchers found that frequent aspirin use was associated with a 13% reduction in the risk of ovarian cancer, and risk reductions were observed across subgroups.

The meta-analysis included 9 cohort studies from the Ovarian Cancer Cohort Consortium and 8 case-control studies from the Ovarian Cancer Association Consortium. 


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The 9 cohort studies encompassed a total of 491,651 patients at risk for ovarian cancer. Between 9.8% and 38% of patients were frequent aspirin users, which was defined as taking aspirin 6 or 7 days per week. At a mean follow-up of 4.6 years to 14.3 years, 2600 of these patients were diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

The 8 case-control studies included a total of 5726 ovarian cancer cases and 8027 control individuals. Between 5.6% and 29.8% of these patients were frequent aspirin users.

Frequent aspirin use was associated with a 10% reduction in the risk of ovarian cancer in the cohort studies (hazard ratio, 0.90; 95% CI, 0.81-1.01) and a 16% reduction in the risk of ovarian cancer in the case-control studies (odds ratio, 0.84; 95% CI, 0.72-0.98).

When the researchers analyzed data from the studies together, there was 13% reduction in the risk of ovarian cancer with frequent aspirin use (relative risk [RR], 0.87; 95% CI, 0.80-0.94).

Frequent aspirin use was associated with a lower risk of ovarian cancer regardless of family history of breast or ovarian cancer, obese or non-obese status, parity or nulliparity, the duration of oral contraceptive use, tubal ligation status, and ovarian cancer risk score. However, frequent aspirin use was not associated with a lower risk of ovarian cancer among patients with endometriosis.

The researchers noted that associations with frequent aspirin use were generally similar for all ovarian cancer histotypes, but risk reductions were “particularly robust” for patients with high-grade serous ovarian cancer (RR, 0.86).

“[T]his study, the largest to date on frequent aspirin use and ovarian cancer, supports a 13% reduction in ovarian cancer risk with frequent aspirin use, with a 14% reduction for high-grade serous carcinoma,” the researchers concluded. 

“Similar risk reductions were observed across subgroups defined by established epidemiologic risk factors, and no subgroup experienced a significant increased risk with aspirin use. These results suggest that primary prevention of ovarian cancer is an added benefit of frequent aspirin use that could be incorporated into composite risk-benefit calculations.” 

Disclosures: Some study authors declared affiliations with biotech, pharmaceutical, and/or device companies. Please see the original reference for a full list of disclosures.

Reference

Hurwitz LM, Townsend MK, Jordan SJ, et al. Modification of the association between frequent aspirin use and ovarian cancer risk: A meta-analysis using individual-level data from two ovarian cancer consortia. J Clin Oncol. Published online July 22, 2022. doi:10.1200/JCO.21.01900

This article originally appeared on Cancer Therapy Advisor