Prostate Cancer Risk Reduction by Regular Acetaminophen

Prostate cancer risk can be reduced by regular intake of acetaminophen (paracetamol), according to the recent study done by American Cancer Society. Use of 30 tablets a month or more of acetaminophen for five or more years was associated with an estimated 38% lower risk of prostate carcinoma.

The study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Bio-markers and Prevention. It is one of the two studies on the cancer of prostate till date which looked into the consequences of regular acetaminophen use over the long term.

As per the researchers the use of NSAIDs (non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), such as aspirin over the long-term have been linked to a slight reduction in prostate cancer risk. It is based on the previous epidemiological studies. Acetaminophen is not commonly considered as NSAID. It acts as an analgesic as well as an anti-inflammatory.

Acetaminophen is in a class of medications called analgesics (pain relievers) and anti pyretics (fever reducers). It works by changing the way the body senses pain and by cooling the body.

Uses of Acetaminophen:

• relieve mild to moderate pain from headaches,

• muscle aches,

• menstrual periods,

• colds and sore throats,

• toothaches,

• backaches,

• reactions to vaccinations (shots),

• To reduce fever.

Acetaminophen may also be used to relieve the pain of osteoarthritis (arthritis caused by the breakdown of the lining of the joints).

Read more about the acetaminophen uses, recommended dosage, side effects, overdose symptoms…

Researchers from the American Cancer Society gathered data on 78,485 adult males in the Cancer Prevention Study II Cohort.

They identified 8,092 cases of cancer of prostate during the 1992-2007 follow-up. Current regular use of acetaminophen at least one tablet per day (> 30 pills per month) for 5 years or more was associated with lower risk of overall prostate carcinoma (RR = 0.62, 95% CI 0.44-0.87) as well as lower risk of aggressive prostate cancer (RR = 0.49, 95% CI 0.27-0.88). Current regular use of for less than 5 years duration was not associated with prostate carcinoma risk.

Eric Jacobs, Ph.D., and team who set out to determine whether regular acetaminophen use might impact on prostate cancer risk rates, stated that –

"While the results of this observational study suggest that long-term regular acetaminophen use may be associated with lower prostate carcinoma risk, our findings require replication by other studies, and do not justify use of acetaminophen to prevent cancer of prostate.

Acetaminophen is considered relatively safe when used at recommended doses but unintentional acetaminophen overdose is an important cause of acute liver failure. Still, results of this study could lead to further research on acetaminophen that might provide biological insights about the process of prostate cancer development and how this process could be slowed."

Note –

Use of acetaminophen is not advocated at all for the risk reduction of prostate carcinoma. Study was conducted on the common people who habitually eat paracetamol tablets for some or the other reason.

In recommended doses, the side effects of paracetamol are mild to non-existent.

Read more about the acetaminophen and current U.S.FDA (Food and Drug Administration) guideline here…

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