Long-Term Use of Vitamin E Supplements May Reduce Risk of Death from

BACKGROUND: Approximately 56,500 cases of diagnosed bladder cancer and 12, 600 deaths from the disease were estimated in the United States for 2002. Cigarette smoking increases the risk of bladder cancer by two to three times, whereas consumption of vegetables and fruit may reduce the risk of this disease. Based on other studies, vitamins E and C may hold some promise in reducing the risk of either new or recurrent bladder cancers.

RESEARCH: Researchers tracked the health of 991,522 adults in the United

States from 1982 through 1998. During this time, 1,289 of the subjects died from bladder cancer. The researchers investigated whether regular use of individual vitamin E or vitamin C supplements (determined at study enrollment) was associated with a reduced risk of death from bladder cancer. Information about supplement use throughout the study was not monitored.

RESULTS: Approximately 9 percent of the subjects reported regular use of vitamin E and 12 percent reported regular use of vitamin C supplements.

People who took vitamin E supplements (dosages not reported) for at least 10 years were 40 percent less likely to die from bladder cancer. Neither a shorter duration of vitamin E supplementation nor regular use of vitamin C supplements for any duration reduced the risk of death from bladder cancer.

IMPLICATIONS: In suggesting possible benefits for vitamin E, the researchers wrote, "If high doses of supplemental vitamin E do inhibit bladder carcinogenesis, there could be potential implications for bladder cancer treatment as well as for primary prevention."

Jacobs EJ, Henion AK, Briggs PJ, et al, "Vitamin C and vitamin E supplement use and bladder cancer mortality in a large cohort of US men and women," American Journal of Epidemiology, 2002;156:1002-1010.

For the original abstract, visit: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov:80/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=12446256&dopt=Abstract

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