In a nutshell
This study evaluated whether there was an association between statin (a type of cholesterol-lowering medication) use and prostate cancer (PCa) mortality. This study found that stain use resulted in lower rates of PCa-specific mortality, in particular with the use of hydrophilic statins.
PCa is one of the most common cancers diagnosed in North-American men. 60% of PCa develops in men older than 65 years of age. Many patients older than 65 also have high cholesterol levels and need cholesterol-lowering medications.
Statins are drugs that are commonly used to lower blood cholesterol. Hydrophilic statins such as pravastatin (Pravachol) and rosuvastatin (Crestor) are statins that interact with water molecules. Hydrophobic statins such as simvastatin (Zocor), lovastatin (Mevacor), fluvastatin (Lescol), atorvastatin (Lipitor), and cerivastatin (Bayco)) are statins that do not interact with water molecules. Some studies have suggested that statins lead to cancer cell death. However, the association between statin use and mortality in patients with PCa remains under investigation.
Methods & findings
This study involved 21512 men. 9138 of these men used a statin. 6607 men used a hydrophobic statin. Hydrophilic statins were used by 4211 men. There was also a subgroup of men (1680) who switched from statin subgroups. A total of 5187 patients were diagnosed with PCa. The follow-up in this study was 9.42 years following diagnosis with PCa.
Overall, patients who used a statin had a 24% lower risk of mortality due to PCa compared to those who never took statins. The use of a hydrophilic statin was associated with a 32.4% lower risk of mortality due to PCa. Hydrophobic statins were associated with a 17.2% lower risk of mortality from PCa.
The bottom line
The authors concluded that statins (particularly hydrophilic statins) were associated with a lower mortality related to PCa.
The fine print
This study was based on medical records. Information might have been incomplete. A randomized controlled study is needed to confirm these results.
If you have concerns about statin use, please discuss this with your doctor.
Published By :
European urology focus
Jun 30, 2020
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