Postdiagnosis Statin Use and Mortality in Prostate Cancer


Key Points

  • Postdiagnosis statin use was associated with a 17% reduction in prostate cancer mortality.
  • A 19% reduction in all-cause mortality was observed.

As reported by Larsen et al in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, a Danish retrospective study has shown reduced cancer-specific and all-cause mortality with postdiagnosis statin use in patients with prostate cancer.

Study Details

The study involved nationwide Danish registry data from 31,790 patients with incident prostate adenocarcinoma from 1998 to 2011. Postdiagnosis statin use was defined as at least two prescriptions as a time-varying covariate with a 1-year lag. A total of 6,780 patients were postdiagnosis statin users. Outcomes were assessed through 2013. Secondary analyses assessed statin use within exposure periods of 1 or 5 years after prostate cancer diagnosis and prediagnosis statin use.

Mortality Outcomes

During median follow-up of 2.8 years (interquartile range = 1.3–5.1 years) from 1 year after diagnosis, 7,365 patients died of prostate cancer and 11,811 died of other causes. Postdiagnosis statin use was associated with a significantly reduced risk of prostate cancer mortality (adjusted hazard ratio [HR] = 0.83, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.77–0.89) and all-cause mortality (HR = 0.81, 95% CI = 0.76–0.85). Similar results were observed in 1-year and 5-year sensitivity analyses for prostate cancer mortality (HR = 0.82, 95% CI = 0.76–0.89; HR = 0.89, 95% CI = 0.77–1.02) and all-cause mortality (HR = 0.80, 95% CI = 0.75–0.85; HR = 0.78, 95% CI = 0.71–0.87).

No substantial difference in effect was found according to the estimated dose or type of statin, clinical stage, Gleason score, or prediagnosis statin use. However, postdiagnosis statin users who were diagnosed early during the study period or received radical prostatectomy or endocrine therapy had somewhat lower hazard ratios for prostate cancer mortality compared with the overall analysis.

The investigators concluded: “Postdiagnosis statin use was associated with reduced mortality from prostate cancer; however, it remains to be established whether this association is causal.”

The study was funded by the Danish Cancer Society and the Conquer Cancer Foundation.

Signe Benzon Larsen, PhD, of the Danish Cancer Society Research Center, is the corresponding author of the Journal of Clinical Oncology article.

The content in this post has not been reviewed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Inc. (ASCO®) and does not necessarily reflect the ideas and opinions of ASCO®.