WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) -- A new study from Denmark found that taking certain painkillers may reduce a woman's risk of deadly ovarian cancer.
According to the study, women who regularly take aspirin were 40 percent less likely to develop ovarian cancer than women who rarely take the painkiller. This applies to women who take aspirin twice a week for at least a month.
Other pain relievers like acetaminophen, ibuprofen and naproxen were also found to have an association with lowering a woman's risk of ovarian cancer. Women who regularly took these painkillers lowered their risk of ovarian cancer by about 28 percent.
The study involved about 750 women with ovarian cancer and a control group of 1,500 women without cancer. The women indicated which medications they took on a regular basis and their use of oral contraceptives.
"Our findings suggest a potential protective effect of analgesic use on ovarian cancer risk, but that benefit should be balanced against adverse effects of pain medication use, such as risk of bleeding and peptic ulcers," says Dr. Susanne Kjær from the Danish Cancer Society Research Center, the lead author in the study.
According to ovariancancer.org, ovarian cancer is the deadliest form of gynecologic cancer, and the ninth most common cancer found in women. The National Cancer Institute predicts that about 15,500 women will die of ovarian cancer this year.