SAN DIEGO—Statin use is independently associated with improved disease-specific and overall survival after surgery for renal cell carcinoma (RCC), researchers reported at the American Urological Association 2013 annual meeting.

Samuel Kaffenberger, MD, and colleagues at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tenn., conducted a retrospective study of 1,011 patients who underwent radical or partial nephrectomy for RCC. The median follow-up for the entire cohort was 43 months.

Patients on statins at the time of surgery had a 57% decreased risk of cancer-related death and a 41% decreased risk of death from any cause compared with patients not on statins, after adjusting for possible confounding variables, Dr. Kaffenberger reported.

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“To our knowledge, this is the first [report of an] association between statin use and improved survival after renal cell carcinoma,” Dr. Kaffenberger said.

Commenting on the new study, Scott Eggener, MD, Associate Professor of Urologic Oncology at the University of Chicago, noted that one in four Americans older than 45 years take a statin and RCC occurs most often in men aged 50-70, “it may be prudent to prospectively evaluate if statins protect against progression after RCC treatment.”