Can you let me know if you are on aspirin or an NSAID eg ibuprofen or naproxen for their anti-cancer effect?

Hi all.

ViperVictoria and I would like to take a survey of all you ladies to find out who is taking aspirin or an anti-inflammatory like Ibuprofen or Naproxen for their anti-cancer effect. Or indeed if you are taking one of these for other reasons. We are interested in people who are taking the anti-inflammatory regularly ie every day at the normal recommended dose for someone with arthritis (for example), not someone who takes the odd ibuprofen.

If you are taking one of these medications, we would like to get regular updates from you to let us know how you are getting on.

We would be most grateful if you would consider sharing your experience on the medication with us. As you may know I have had good results with ibuprofen as an adjunct to all the recognised treatment. I must point out that I am in no way advocating these medications as an alternative to full orthodox treatment. Incidentally I am a retired GP.

Please message me in private if you prefer.

We are just interested to know other people's experience with these medications, if you wish to share it with us.

Best wishes.

Eileen x

39 Replies

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  • Hi Eileen, I had thought of you just before Christmas when there was a discussion on R4 about the massive study that CRUK were starting looking at this... I had meant to post, but forgot (damn these sieve-holes in my head!!) anyway, your interesting post has reminded me... I'm sure you are aware of it but others may be interested! cancerresearchuk.org/about-...

    I was glad to read that you were well and have followed your postings with interest. Best wishes to you and V, Sx

  • Thanks Sunfleury. Yes, this is the ADD-Aspirin trial by Cancer Research UK that I referred to in my previous post. Thanks for providing the direct link to the Cancer Research UK (CRUK) website describing the trial.

    Best wishes.

    Eileen x

  • thank you for sharing that link, it is quite interesting, will definitely be speaking to my gp about it,

  • Happy to let you know how i get on. I am yet tostart ibruprofen i get my results on friday and will be asking to start ibruprofen.

  • Thanks Leeds, and all best wishes.

    E xx

  • I am on 75 mgms of aspirin - I buy the gastroprotective formula - and have been for 8 years. I was on it as my cancer was growing so it obviously didn't stop it, but my disease didn't have the typical rice grain disseminated spread pattern that is so common with high grade serous. Vx

  • Hello I am taking naproxen everyday for rheumatoid disease and was on them for at least 3 years prior to OC diagnosis. Wasn't aware that they contribute to anti cancer treatment...let's hope so!

  • Thanks Lyndy. That is helpful. Could you possibly let me know what is your situation, eg when diagnosed, what sort of cancer, what treatment, and any recurrences. Please message me privately if you prefer. Or just basically when diagnosed and any recurrences.

    If you want any more info re NSAIDs like Naproxen and their anti-cancer effect please see my previous posts. If you click on drdu, then they will come up.

    All best wishes.

    Eileen x

  • I started taking 75mg gastroprotective aspirin shortly after finishing the first treatment in November 2011 for OC clear cell stage 3c. Recurred Jan 2013 for which had a second op + chemo and since Aug 2013 have continued with the aspirin daily (GP prescribes it). Still in remission.

    Lesley

  • That sounds very encouraging, Lesley. Thank you for your information. I would say keep taking the aspirin! Could you possibly give me an update maybe every 6 months or so?

    Many thanks, and best wishes.

    Eileen x

  • Will do my best, Eileen!! Think I'd better put a reminder in my Outlook Calendar!....and my paper diary.

    Lesley

  • Thanks Lesley.

    E x

  • Six months on....CA125 still = 9. Hope you are doing ok too?

    Best wishes,

    Lesley

  • Thanks Lesley. That is very good news. Have put it in my notes. Can you possibly report back to me in another 6 months?

    Yes thanks, doing fine. CA125 was 6 in April again. Next blood test in August.

    All best wishes.

    Eileen xx

  • 75 my daily following chemo debaulk chemo finished in July 2015 for high grade serous PPC 3c. What an interesting survey!

    Vicki

  • Thanks very much, Vicki. Glad you decided to take aspirin. I see you asked for advice on this site 6 months ago, but I missed it at the time. I have done previous posts about aspirin and NSAIDs like ibuprofen. Could you possibly let me know every 6 months or so how you are doing?

    Best wishes.

    Eileen x

  • Will do

  • I find these posts quite interesting. I will take the matter up re ibuprofen with my gp at next visit. As you already know my onc wasnt happy with my question. I did go to my gp last week with an unrelated problem but he had a student with him which put me off from asking questions about taking a dose of ibuprofen. However, I might start on a small dose or maybe the aspirin and see how it goes as drug free apart from blood pressure and statins at the moment

  • I believe statins have an anti-cancer effect, though don't know more than that. But that is a good idea to discuss it with your GP. The CRUK ADD-Aspirin may encourage him/her.

    Good luck.

    E x

  • Eileen, what dose of ibuprofen have you been taking for maintenance? Was toying with the idea too but am a bit concernd about developing resistance.

  • I take ibuprofen 400mg 3 times a day, and omeprazole 20mg daily to protect my stomach - this is very important. You have to take something like omeprazole when on ibuprofen longterm at that dose, or probably any dose. There is no evidence that I know of of people developing resistance to ibuprofen. It just is not very strong as an anti-cancer drug and is best taken when in full remission, I think.

    Eileen x

  • Cheers for the details Eileen. I'd run it by my gp as well but that gives me a good idea. Long may your remission last.

  • Thank you, and all good wishes to you.

    Eileen xx

  • Hi Eileen! I take 400 mgs of ibuprofen daily and have done so since I broke both my ankles in June 2015. I don't know if it has had any effect on the cancer as I will start 3rd line chemo in March as the gemza, carbo, avastin had no effect in 2015. I start taxol in March when I return to Kent from Canberra where I am visiting my children and grandchildren. 38 degrees today! By the way I am 3c ovca clear cell serous carcinoma diagnosed early 2013. Regards Carole 😊

  • You might be better on at least 400mg twice a day, but along with a stomach protector like omeprazole - see above. However taxol is probably the main thing. Thanks for the info. It sounds like you are enjoying Canberra! Have a lovely time.

    Best wishes.

    Eileen x

  • Hi, Eileen.

    I take 250 mg of naproxen twice a day for relief of pain caused by osteoarthritis. Technically I could double this, but my GP is not happy when I do, so I usually don't. I also take 20mg omeprazole daily. I don't think I started this till after diagnosis.

    I had stage 1A mucinous adenocarcinoma of my right ovary diagnosed in Sept/Oct 2011. It was treated with the usual TAH, BSO and omentectomy. I did not have chemo. So far I have not had any recurrence.

    Barbara

  • I would think Naproxen 250mg twice a day may well be enough. It is a reasonable dose for arthritis, and should do the trick as regards killing cancer cells. Does your type of cancer have a fairly good outlook anyway, being stage 1? I am no oncology expert, but sounds likely, especially as you had no chemo.

    But the Naproxen should certainly give you a bit of added reassurance, and I would recommend staying on it.

    I would appreciate it if you could give me an update in about 6 months. Many thanks.

    Eileen x

  • Yes, caught at stage 1 my type of cancer has a pretty good prognosis - it's one that tends to grow large in situ before metastasing. Being relatively slow-growing, it is somewhat given to late recurrence, though. The lack of chemo is partly because of the early stage and partly because mucinous adenocarcinomas tend not to respond favourably to chemo anyway. (I think the response rate to carbo/taxol is only about 17%, with that being partial response rather than complete response.) Recurrences are best treated with further surgery, where possible.

    I'll do my best to remember in 6 months time!

  • Thanks for that info, Barbara. If you forget in 6 months, I will probably contact you, as am keeping a note of everything! Stick with the Naproxen, I would say.

    Eileen xx

  • Hi Eileen....I have been on aspirin...325mg daily for past dx of tia. I started taking ibuprofen 400mg daily after reading about it on this site. It also helps some with the aches and pains in my legs post chemo. I am going on 11 months since my last chemo,and my ca125 has not gone above 6. I am due to have my next 3 month checkup in Feb. Will be glad to keep you posted.

    I did ask my oncologist about the ibuprofen. He said I could take it,but he didn't seem to think it would have any impact on my remission. My gp wondered if it would keep the ca125 low artificially. ....without actually affecting the cancer. Who knows. It won't hurt in any case! Judy

  • Your GP is wrong about the CA125 being kept low artificially. CA125 is only a marker of your cancer. Not every type of ovarian cancer is related to CA125, but if your cancer is of the common type where CA125 is a good measure of the activity of your cancer then ibuprofen will not mask this at all. The ibuprofen acts on the cancer activity, not on the CA125 level, which is just a marker of cancer activity.

    Anyway the aspirin dose of 325mg should be enough in itself to have a good anti-cancer effect.

    Good luck at your next check-up. Could you possibly let me know, if you don't mind, the date of diagnosis of your cancer, and what type it is, including grade and stage, and also what treatment you got. Please message me privately if you would prefer. And would be glad to hear from you for an update in 6 months or so. Of course happy to hear from you any time!

    You are certainly in a good position so far. Carry on as you are doing, I would say.

    Best wishes.

    Eileen x

  • Hi Eileen , havent been on this site for ages, but had been wondering how you were . So pleased you are doing well . Ive been on NSAIDS since my first line chemo for stage 3 b/c ppc - diagnosed May 2013 . Im taking naproxen 500 mg twice a day with omeprazole cover . I did have really bad achilles tendonitis during /after my frontline chemo and avastin and have been diagnosed as having pseudogout with crystals in my tendons. Theyve settled down quite well now , but I continue with the naproxen . I havent recurred yet after my first treatment ( im also BRCA2 positive ) , last ca125 was 6 ( highest at diagnosis 800 ) . Im also taking metformin off license ( Im not diabetic )

    So pleased you ok - Hilary x

  • Thanks Hilary. Sorry, I seem to have missed your reply till now. Thanks for the update. Very glad to hear you are doing ok too. Good for you taking both Naproxen and Metformin. I know there is evidence out there re metformin. If you could give me an update again in about 6 months, that would be good.

    All best wishes.

    Eileen xx

  • Hi Drudu, my mother is on aspirin once a day, she is in remission for stage 3c womb cancer. She doesn't have any stomach ulcers / bleeding but I am worried for the long term. Should she take omeprazole to prevent this, and if so is it over the counter or does it have to be prescribed. I live in the U.K

    Should she stick to aspirin or is ibuprofen better? Thanks

  • I don't know her whole past medical history, but often people are fine on aspirin alone if it is the 75mg dose once a day, and do not require omeprazole. You should tell your GP she is taking aspirin, and discuss with the GP if she should take omeprazole along with it - hopefully she will not need it. The dose of omeprazole would be 20mg daily.

    Would you mind telling me more about your mother for my informal investigation? Of course you are under no obligation to do so.

    Just when was she diagnosed, what treatment she had, whether she is in full remission (ie no evidence of disease after initial treatment), and when she started aspirin.

    You can tell me more info by personal message if you prefer.

    Best wishes.

    Eileen

  • Just realised I didn't reply re aspirin or ibuprofen. I honestly don't know which is better. I know ibuprofen has worked for me personally, but there is a lot of evidence that aspirin works well.

    Best wishes.

    E xx

  • Hi Eileen

    I've just been prescribed Naproxen for back pain and remembered that there had been posts about anti inflammatories and their potential use with cancer patients. Happy to let you know my experience - what do you want to know? I will start taking them this week so nothing to report so far although I must say the list of possible side effects is making me nervous. I've also been prescribed omeprazole to protect the stomach.

    Beth

  • You should be fine re side effects if you are taking omeprazole 20mg daily.

    Sorry going out in a minute.   Will reply further in next 2 days.   If I don't please contact me again.   Thanks a lot for getting in touch.

    Eileen x

  • Hi Beth.

    Thanks for contacting me.   If you could possibly let me know when you were diagnosed with ovarian cancer, what type and stage it was at diagnosis, what treatment you have had to date, and if you are in remission or not.   Only if you are happy to do that.   You can message me privately - that might be better for privacy for you.   And what dose of Naproxen you are taking. 

      You can see my previous posts about ibuprofen etc if you click on my name, drdu, if you would like more information about anti-inflammatories and their anti-cancer effect.

    Best wishes.

    Eileen xx

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