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Statin use is associated with reduced risk of esophageal cancer

Statin use is associated with reduced risk of histologic subtypes of esophageal cancer, reports the most recent issue of Gastroenterology.

News image

Most patients with esophageal adenocarcinoma or squamous cell cancer present with advanced, incurable disease.

Statins have reported anti-carcinogenic effects and may be chemoprotective.

Dr Leo Alexandre and colleagues from the United Kingdom investigated the association between regular use of statins and the main histologic subtypes of esophageal malignancy in the UK general population.

The research team identified all individuals in the UK General Practice Research Database diagnosed with esophageal cancer from 2000 through 2009.

Patients were linked to the National Cancer Registry to confirm histologic subtypes.

Each patient was matched with up to 4 controls for age, sex, and practice.

Statin use for 1−4 years was inversely associated with esophageal squamous cell cancer
Gastroenterology

The researchers performed a nested case-control analysis using conditional logistic regression to estimate the risk of each subtype with regular statin use, adjusted for body mass index, smoking, alcohol intake, and concomitant use of medications.

In total, 581 participants with esophageal adenocarcinoma, 213 with esophagogastric junctional adenocarcinoma, and 332 with esophageal squamous cell cancer were matched to 2167, 783, and 1242 controls, respectively.

The research team found that regular statin use was inversely associated with development of esophageal adenocarcinoma, and esophagogastric junctional adenocarcinoma.

The team noted that statin use for 1−4 years was inversely associated with esophageal squamous cell cancer.

Dr Alexandre's team commented, "In a nested case-control analysis of a UK population-based cohort, statin use was inversely associated with histologic subtypes of esophageal cancer."

"Randomized controlled trials are warranted to determine whether statins have chemopreventive effects in high-risk groups."

Gastroenterol 2014: 146(3): 661-668
06 March 2014

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