Daily Aspirin Protects Against Colon Cancer, Study Says
Low-dose aspirin may protect against colon cancer, new research suggests. Taking a baby or regular aspirin pill daily for six years lowers the risk of developing the disease by 24 percent, according to a study published Thursday in the Lancet. European researchers analyzed results from four trials that involved 14,000 people and spanned 20 years. Study participants who developed colon cancer after taking a daily aspirin had a 35 percent lower risk of dying from it compared to those who did not take the drug, The Washington Post reports. But aspirin isn't for everyone: Chronic use can irritate the stomach, intestines, and bowel, and cause lesions and bleeding. Study authors said the drug would most benefit people with risk factors for colon cancer, such as a family history or previous polyp.
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A New Route to Migraine Relief: Botox?
Migraine sufferers who haven't found relief in prescription or over-the-counter medications can now seek help from the same drug that erases crows' feet and forehead wrinkles. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration last week approved the use of Botox, delivered through a couple of dozen needle pricks around the head and neck, to prevent chronic migraines—which for approval purposes means severe headaches of four hours or more at least 15 days a month. Great Britain approved Botox for the same purpose in July, writes U.S. News's Kurtis Hiatt.
But getting needled is neither risk-free nor the solution for every migraine sufferer.
The FDA based its decision on two 24-week trials involving a total of 1,384 adults in North America and Europe. Both trials were funded by drug maker Allergan, which last month agreed to pay $600 million for illegally promoting Botox for headaches, which, at the time, were not an FDA approved use. By the end of the first trial, those who received Botox experienced 7.8 fewer migraine days during the 24 weeks than they experienced during the 24 weeks leading up to the trial compared with 6.4 fewer days for those injected with a placebo of plain salt water. The Botox group in the second trial had 9.2 fewer migraine days while the placebo group had 6.9 fewer days. Allergan published its results last March in the journal Cephalalgia, the medical term for headache. The differences are significant by clinical trial standards, but "not huge," says Avi Ashkenazi, a Doylestown, Pa., neurologist who has published papers on the subject, including one in Current Neurology and Neuroscience Reports. [Read more: A New Route to Migraine Relief: Botox?]
9 Shocking Diabetes Risk Indicators
More than 23 million people are living with diabetes in the United States, with 24 percent of cases going undiagnosed, according the American Diabetes Association. You may be at risk or already suffering complications and not even know it, writes AOL Health's Katherine Steinberg. Take a look at some surprising diabetes indicators:
Breast Size. If you're a size D or larger at age 20, you may be up to five times more likely to develop diabetes than your flat-chested friends, according to a study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. This finding is surprising because it indicates that breast size is a significant factor independent of body mass index (BMI). However powerful these findings are, more studies and research remains to be done to be entirely conclusive.
Eyebrow Color. Have your brows stayed dark while the rest of your hair has turned gray? You may want to get a fasting-glucose test from your doctor. A German study of 100 men between the ages of 50 and 70 with graying hair found that 76 percent of the men with dark brows had diabetes, compared to 18 percent of the gray-browed men. The theory is that diabetes may inhibit the graying process in eyebrow hair. [Read more: 9 Shocking Diabetes Indicators.]
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