Use of NSAIDs, smoking and lung cancer risk

Br J Cancer. 2008 Jan 15;98(1):232-7. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6604151. Epub 2007 Dec 18.


We investigated the risk of lung cancer in relation to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) among 573 cases and 857 sex- and age-matched controls for whom we had information on use of NSAIDs, from a prescription database covering all pharmacies in Denmark since 1995, and self-reported NSAID use, smoking habits and other potential confounders. Associations were expressed as odds ratios, assessed by logistic regression in unmatched analyses. After controlling for smoking habits, length of education and concomitant use of acetaminophen, we found a slightly decreased relative risk of 0.86 (95% confidence intervals, 0.65-1.14) for lung cancer associated with any use of NSAIDs. The risk decreased significantly (P=0.02) with increasing numbers of dispensed prescriptions per year during the 1-3 years before the index date with a relative risk of 0.49 (0.28-0.84) among those with four or more prescriptions per year during this period. Our findings suggest that regular use of NSAIDs is associated with a slightly or moderately reduced risk for lung cancer.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Denmark / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Male
  • Meta-Analysis as Topic
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Distribution
  • Smoking*


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal