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Do regular doses of ASA prevent colon cancer?

Depends.

According to a recent study  JAMA Oncology, although it’s been long-established that taking ASA regularly is linked to a lower risk of colon cancer in elderly people, that all depends on when you start taking it.

By analyzing 35 years of data on a total of 94,500 people enrolled in the Nurses’ Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study, the researchers concluded that regular use of ASA was indeed linked to lower colorectal cancer risk among people aged 70, but this advantage was only present in people who had started taking the drug before the age of 70.

People who started taking regular doses of ASA at the age of 70 or beyond did not seem to reap any benefit from the ASA, according to this analysis.

In fact, according to another study, people who started taking a daily low dose of aspirin after age 70 for about five years actually had an overall 30% higher risk of death from cancer.

As every comedian knows, timing is everything.