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NSAIDs can Improve Overweight Breast Cancer Patient’s Recurrence Rates

Update Date: Aug 14, 2014 01:26 PM EDT

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), such as aspirin and ibuprofen, can improve the breast cancer recurrence rate for postmenopausal overweight or obese patients who are already receiving hormone therapy. The researchers found that NSAIDs caused a delay in cancer recurrence as well.

"Overweight or obese women diagnosed with breast cancer are facing a worse prognosis than normal-weight women," said cancer researcher Linda deGraffenried of The University of Texas at Austin. "We believe that obese women are facing a different disease. There are changes at the molecular level. We seek to modulate the disease promoting effects of obesity."

According to the background information provided in the press release, overweight or obese postmenopausal breast cancer patients have a higher recurrence rate than other women. The researchers of the study analyzed the medical records of 440 breast cancer patients. They compared the patients' prognoses based on whether or not they took NSAIDs.

They found that people who used NSAIDs had a lower recurrence rate of ERα breast cancer, which is the most common form of breast cancer by 50 percent. ERα breast cancer makes up 75 percent of all diagnoses. The NSAIDs were also tied to preventing the cancer from recurring by more than two years.

"What this study does is present great promise that a fairly inexpensive and nontoxic agent might benefit obese and overweight breast cancer patients who are at a higher risk of aromatase inhibitor failure - but further studies are needed to confirm these results," Laura Bowers, who headed a second portion of the study, stated.

The study was published in the journal, Cancer Research.

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