Rebekah Walker visits the dermatologist regularly. The 70-year old has had skin cancer five times and is at high risk of melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer.
"Oh it's really scary, because it can be really, really serious. The ones I've had so far, they can remove really easily," she said.
But the aspirin she takes to combat heart disease may also be lowering her risk of developing melanoma. A new study in the journal Cancer looked at nearly 60,000 women over 50. Researchers found women who used aspirin had a 21-percent lower risk of melanoma. Taking the medication for at least 5 years reduced the risk 30 percent.
"When you reduce inflammation with something like aspirin, that might reduce cancer as well," said Dr. Jashin Wu, with Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center.
The study also looked at other pain medications such as acetaminophen and found those drugs did not lower a woman's risk of melanoma.
Taking aspirin can cause other health problems, including bleeding. Dr. Wu, a dermatologist, says more research is needed and urges patients to stick with proven prevention methods. "Things like avoid the sun at peak hours between 10am and 3pm, they can wear hats, long sleeves, and sun screen of SPF of at least 30 and when they're outside in the sun, they should reapply it every two hours," Dr. Wu said.
Walker is following her doctor's advice, but she's also taking aspirin. "It gives me one more reason to make sure I take my meds," she said.
And she is hoping it keeps her out of the doctor's office.
Thursday, March 6 2014 11:41 PM EST2014-03-07 04:41:04 GMT
The Randolph man who admitted to murdering his niece in 2008 will be sentenced this spring. In August Michael Jacques struck a deal with federal prosecutors. He gave up his right to an appeal and pleadedMore >>
The Randolph man who admitted to murdering his niece in 2008 will be sentenced this spring.More >>
Thursday, March 6 2014 11:40 PM EST2014-03-07 04:40:13 GMT
It's a real estate deal between UVM and the Queen City that could end up kicking some non-profits to the curb. The Burlington School District voted Thursday night on half of the multi-million dollar deal.More >>
It's a real estate deal between UVM and the Queen City that could end up kicking some non-profits to the curb.More >>
Thursday, March 6 2014 7:53 PM EST2014-03-07 00:53:09 GMT
'Tis the season-- as winter winds down frost heaves and potholes arrive. The ups and downs of the 2014 winter can be seen and felt. No route or road is spared. And just adding to the frustration-- theMore >>
The deep freeze is making for some rough roads across our region and it's also contributing to a fuel shortage. Shelby Cashman has more.More >>
Thursday, March 6 2014 7:56 PM EST2014-03-07 00:56:36 GMT
The pothole problem knows no boundaries. Our neighbors to the north are also dealing with rough roads. The Quebec Transportation Ministry budgeted $260 million for winter road maintenance. But crews haveMore >>
Our neighbors to the north are also dealing with rough roads.More >>
Thursday, March 6 2014 4:23 PM EST2014-03-06 21:23:33 GMT
Investigators now say a fire that damaged a student housing complex at St. Michael's College was not caused by the building's heating system. The fire last month damaged a row of townhouses. All of theMore >>
Investigators now say a fire that damaged a student housing complex at St. Michael's College was not caused by the building's heating system.More >>
Thursday, March 6 2014 4:50 PM EST2014-03-06 21:50:24 GMT
Vermont police say a New Hampshire woman was driving drunk with two kids in her car. The incident happened Wednesday at the Intersection of 1-91 and Route 302 in Newbury, Vt. Vermont state police sayMore >>
Vermont police say a New Hampshire woman was driving drunk with two kids in her car.More >>