If you are a smoker, you may want to consider taking ibuprofen on a regular basis. Short of quitting smoking entirely, taking the anti-inflammatory drug has been found to appreciably reduce the risk of dying from lung cancer if you are a smoker.
A recent study found current or former smokers who use ibuprofen on a regular basis are almost 50 percent less likely to die from lung cancer than those who did not take the medication. The effectiveness of the drug may rest on its anti-inflammatory action because chronic inflammation is associated with an increased risk of lung cancer.
Lung cancer is one of the most common types of cancers in the United States. This year, about 225,000 people will be diagnosed with the disease, and 158,000 will die from it. Lung cancer causes more deaths than any other type of cancer, and smoking is the main cause of lung cancer, playing a role in 80 to 90 percent of all lung cancer cases in the United States. People who smoke are 15 to 30 times more likely than non-smokers to get lung cancer or die from it.
The ibuprofen study looked at almost 11,000 people over an 18-year period. Researchers determined the cause of death for people in the study. They used statistical models to estimate how ibuprofen use was connected to the risk of death from lung cancer.
They found that 270 people died from lung cancer, and of that number, 252 had a history of smoking. The researchers also looked at the effect of ibuprofen in another sample of almost 6,000 people with a history of smoking.
After analyzing the data, they found that smokers who use ibuprofen were 48 percent less likely to die from lung cancer than those who did not use ibuprofen.
They also looked at the effect of aspirin on lung cancer death, but found no connection between the two. The researchers, however, still remind people the best way to lower the risk of lung cancer is by stopping smoking entirely and living a healthy lifestyle.
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