Statins May Decrease Prostate Growth

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ATLANTA—Statin therapy may slow prostate growth in men with an elevated PSA level and a negative prostate biopsy, according to findings presented at the American Urological Association 2012 annual meeting.

Researchers at the Duke Prostate Center of Duke University Medical Center in Durham, N.C.,  came to that conclusion based on an analysis of data from the men who participated in the REDUCE (Reduction by Dutasteride of Prostate Cancer Events) trial. The four-year randomized trial comparing dutasteride and placebo for prostate cancer prevention. In that trial, all men underwent prostate biopsies at two and four years and had their prostate volume (PV) measured by transrectal ultrasound.

The study, which was led by Stephen Freedland, MD, and presented by Roberto Muller, MD, included 6,093 subjects, of whom 1,032 (16.95) used statins at baseline. In the placebo arm, statin users had a 3.9% decrease in PV growth compared with nonusers at the two-year biopsy; in the dutasteride arm, statin users had a 5.0% decrease. After adjusting for multiple confounders, statin use was not associated with PV at the four-year biopsy in either the placebo or dutasteride arms.

The degree of PV growth reduction found in the study is consistent with prior study findings showing that statins reduced PSA levels by 4.1%, suggesting that the declines in PSA observed in that study may be due to PV reductions.

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