Washington, Apr 22 (ANI): Drinking wine may reduce the risk of death and relapse among non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patients before diagnosis, according to a new epidemiology study.
According to Xuesong Han, the first author of the abstract and a doctoral candidate at the Yale School of Public Health, claimed that the findings need to be replicated before any public health recommendations are made.
However, he said that the evidence is becoming clearer that moderate consumption of wine has a large number of advantages.
"This conclusion is controversial, because excessive drinking has a negative social and health impact, and it is difficult to define what is moderate and what is excessive. However, we are continually seeing a link between wine and positive outcomes in many cancers," said Han.
The study was the first to examine the link among patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, in which the researchers analysed data about 546 women with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
And it was found that those who drank wine had a 76 percent five-year survival compared with 68 percent for non-wine drinkers.
On further investigation, it was found that five-year, disease-free survival was 70 percent among those who drank wine as compared with 65 percent among non-wine drinkers.
Researchers also looked at subgroups of lymphoma patients, and found the strongest link between wine consumption and favourable outcomes among patients with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.
The patients had a 40 to 50 percent reduced risk of death, relapse or secondary cancer.
Then, they conducted an analysis to examine the effect of wine consumption among those who had drunk wine for at least the previous 25 years before diagnosis.
Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patients who had been drinking wine for at least this long had a 25 to 35 percent reduced risk of death, relapse or secondary cancer.
Patients with large B-cell lymphoma had about 60 percent reduced risk of death, relapse or secondary cancer if they had been drinking wine for at least the previous 25 years before diagnosis.
"It is clear that lifestyle factors like alcohol can affect outcome," said Han.
The study was presented at the American Association for Cancer Research 100th Annual Meeting 2009. (ANI)