Statin prescriptions and breast cancer recurrence risk: A danish nationwide prospective cohort study

Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 08/03/2011

Ahern TP et al. – Simvastatin, a highly lipophilic statin, was associated with a reduced risk of breast cancer recurrence among Danish women diagnosed with stage I–III breast carcinoma, whereas no association between hydrophilic statin use and breast cancer recurrence was observed.

Methods

  • Nationwide, population-based prospective cohort study of all female residents in Denmark diagnosed with stage I–III invasive breast carcinoma who were reported to the Danish Breast Cancer Cooperative Group registry between 1996 and 2003 (n = 18,769)
  • Women were followed for median of 6.8 years after diagnosis
  • Prescriptions for lipophilic and hydrophilic statins were ascertained from the national electronic pharmacy database
  • Associations between statin prescriptions and breast cancer recurrence were estimated with generalized linear models and Cox proportional hazards regression with adjustment for age and menopausal status at diagnosis; histological grade; estrogen receptor status; receipt of adjuvant therapy; type of primary surgery received; pre-diagnosis HRT; and co-prescriptions of aspirin, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, NSAID, or anticoagulants
  • All statistical tests were 2-sided

Results

  • Most prescriptions for lipophilic statins in study population were for simvastatin
  • Exclusive simvastatin users experienced approximately 10 fewer breast cancer recurrences per 100 women after 10 years of follow-up (adjusted 10-year risk difference = -0.10, 95% confidence interval = -0.11 to -0.08), compared with women who were not prescribed a statin
  • Exclusive hydrophilic statin users had approximately same risk of breast cancer recurrence as women not prescribed a statin over follow-up (adjusted 10-year risk difference = 0.05, 95% CI = -0.01 to 0.11)

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