Prostate Cancer Risk Lower in Statin Users

Prolonged statin use is associated with a decreased risk of prostate cancer (PCa), but the extent of this protective effect varies by duration of use time and type of statin, according to a new study.

A team led by Alexander Lustman, MD, of Clalit Health Services in Tel Aviv, Israel, conducted a population-based cohort study of 66,741 men aged 45-85 years. The mean age at cohort entry was 58 years. During follow-up, 1,813 PCa cases were diagnosed and 11,245 men died. A total of 37,645 subjects (56%) had filled at least one prescription for a statin and 26,061 (39%) had filled prescriptions for statins for at least 12 months.

The longer statins were used, the greater the reduction in PCa risk. In a fully adjusted model, men who used statins for five years or more had a 78% decreased risk of a PCa diagnosis compared with non-users. Men who used statins for one to five years had a 45% decreased risk and those who used statins for three to 12 months had a 32% decreased risk, the researchers reported online ahead of print in Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Disease.

Risk reductions also varied by cumulative statin use. Compared with men who did not take statins, those who had a cumulative defined daily dose of 1-5,000, 5,001-10,000, 10,001-20,000, and 20,001 mg or higher had an 18%, 36%, 65%, and 76% decreased risk, respectively, in a fully adjusted model.

Moreover, the reduction in risk varied by type of statin. Compared with no statin use, men who used rosuvastatin for at least six months had an 80% decreased risk of PCa in a fully adjusted model. Men who used simvastatin or atorvastatin for at least six months had a 52% and 55% decreased risk. The risk was increased by 34% and 29% for men who used lovastatin or fluvastatin, respectively.

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