San Antonio, TX—As the most common cancer in men in the United States, prostate cancer is associated with a prolonged survival and patient care often includes optimizing other comorbidities, such as cardiovascular disease.

In fact, according to a presentation at the recent 2020 American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting, death in prostate cancer patients is often reported to be nonprostate cancer related, attributed to other medical conditions.

Researchers from the University of Texas Health at San Antonio and the South Texas Veterans Health Care System point to multiple reports and epidemiological studies of statins decreasing the risk, progression, and overall mortality of prostate cancer.

Researchers note they had previously gathered data on 300 patients diagnosed with prostate cancer at the Department of Veterans Affairs medical center in San Antonio, with results indicating that using statins has a statistically significant positive effect at delaying death by prostate cancer, with a P-value of 0.018.

Now, the study team has updated its results with the addition of 105 patients. The retrospective observational study involved chart review of 405 patients diagnosed with prostate cancer from 1995 to 2010, in a VA medical center in San Antonio. Variables included age of diagnosis, statin use, type of statin (1st, 2nd, or 3rd generation), dose of statin (6 levels of dosage were identified), length of statin use, time followed in months (from time of diagnosis to either death or the end of the study period), death, and cause of death.

Defined as the primary end point was death by prostate cancer, which occurred in 33 patients, with secondary end points being death by any cancer, occurring in 71 patients, and death by all causes in 205 patients.

Researchers report that the hazard ratio for use of statins for at least 6 months was 0.56, with 95% confidence limits of 0.41 to 1.13, and a P-value of 0.118, indicating no statistically significant effect of statin use and delay in death by prostate cancer.

Secondary endpoint of death by all causes was significantly affected by statins, however, while death by any cancer showed no significant effect.

“The study was unable to conclude if the type of statin, dose of statin or the length of statin use had a significant effect in reaching the different end points,” the authors note.

They add, “The addition of 105 more patients to this study has changed our previous statistically significant primary endpoint results. Concomitant statin use may not help prevent death from prostate cancer or death from any cancer but may help prevent death from all causes. This updated primary endpoint data conflicts with multiple prior epidemiological studies and raises questions on the impact of statin usage on men with prostate cancer.”

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