Effect of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents and finasteride on prostate cancer risk

J Urol. 2002 Nov;168(5):1985-8. doi: 10.1097/01.ju.0000033503.27191.b2.


Purpose: We examine the relationship of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and finasteride on the risk of prostate cancer.

Materials and methods: Participants in this case control study using a prospective collection of data were drawn from consecutive patients who underwent prostate biopsy at 12 different departments of urology from January 1999 to June 2000. Medication use was assessed by self-questionnaire as well as questions about dietary and lifestyle factors that might be relevant for prostate cancer risk.

Results: The study included 639 patients with prostate cancer and 659 cancer-free controls. Univariate analysis showed no significant impact of aspirin and finasteride on prostate cancer risk while the nonaspirin nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug users had a lower risk (OR 0.80, 95% CI 0.64-0.99). After adjusting for potential confounders, the protective effect of nonaspirin nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs was no longer significant (OR, 0.84, 95% CI 0.66-1.07), while finasteride showed a significant protective effect (OR 0.58, 95% CI 0.37-0.92).

Conclusions: The results suggest that finasteride could have a chemopreventive role in prostate cancer. While aspirin did not show any impact on prostate cancer risk, the role of nonaspirin nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs warrants further studies.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / administration & dosage*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / adverse effects
  • Aspirin / administration & dosage
  • Aspirin / adverse effects
  • Biopsy
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Finasteride / administration & dosage*
  • Finasteride / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / etiology
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / prevention & control*
  • Risk


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Finasteride
  • Aspirin