The risk of colon cancer has not been found to decrease with the use of statins. However, researchers suggest that a person’s cholesterol levels may affect a person’s risk of colon cancer.
Researchers compared the use of statins and cholesterol levels in over 22,000 British patients with colon cancer to over 86,000 individuals without colon cancer.
The researchers found that the higher a person’s cholesterol was, the lower their risk of colon cancer was, regardless of statin use. The researchers also found that an unexplained drop in cholesterol within the year leading up to colon cancer diagnosis was linked to an increased risk of colon cancer in statin users and nonusers alike.
Lead study author Dr. Ronac Mamtani said, “There appears to be an artificially protective effect of statins. Although the risk of colorectal cancer was lower in statin users versus nonusers, when we compared those who continued statin therapy versus those who discontinued the therapy, such that each group shared the same indication for statin therapy, there was no difference in risk.”
The findings suggests that cholesterol levels may be an early indicator of colon cancer.
Dr. Mamtani concluded, “Together, these data demonstrate a complex association between statins, cholesterol, and colorectal cancer. While unexplained decreases in blood total cholesterol should alert physicians to consider colon cancer as one potential explanation, future studies are needed to determine the utility of blood cholesterol as a marker for early detection of colon cancer.”
Also, read Bel Marra Health’s article on 6 ways to lower your risk of colon cancer.