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Aspirin link to bowel disease

Tuesday May 4th, 2010

Regular use of aspirin is linked to the development of an unpleasant bowel disease in a new study published today.

British researchers found that people who take the pill for a year or longer face a five times increased risk of developing Crohn's disease.

The disease is thought to affect some 60,000 people in the UK and causes inflammation of the digestive system.

The discovery has emerged from research involving some 200,000 volunteers who have been testing the health benefits of diet in several European countries.

Researchers at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK, found that some developed Crohn's disease and set out to find possible causes.

Researcher Dr Andrew Hart said: "This is early work but our findings do suggest that the regular use of aspirin could be one of many factors which influences the development of this distressing disease in some patients.

"Aspirin does have many beneficial effects, however, including helping to prevent heart attacks and strokes."

He added: "I would urge aspirin users to continue taking this medication since the risk of aspirin users possibly developing Crohn's disease remains very low - only one in every 2,000 users, and the link is not yet finally proved."

The findings were being unveiled today at the Digestive Disease Week conference in New Orleans, USA, today.

Tags: Allergies & Asthma | Europe | Gastroenterology | Pharmaceuticals | North America | UK News

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