(FOX NEWS) – Your risk for developing colon cancer may be tied to how often you take certain antibiotics.
According to a new study that also says the risk was especially higher if antibiotics were used for long periods of time.
Researchers say certain antibiotics that kill anaerobic bacteria, like penicillin, were tied to the increased risk.
The study analyzed over 166,000 middle-aged and older patients from 1989 to 2012.
About 29,000 of them were diagnosed with colon or rectal cancer.
Patients who had used antibiotics for two weeks were about nine percent more likely to get colon cancer.
Those on antibiotics for over 60 days, had a 17-percent increased risk.
But researchers aren’t sure yet of the reason for the connection.
Some believe the answer may lie in microbiomes in the gut and an imbalance of gut bacteria could affect overall health.
And that certain bad bacteria, like E-Coli, might contribute to cancer for some people.
The study was published today in the journal “Gut.”