Preliminary results from a study conducted by the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital in Britain have found that statins –prescription drugs taken to control high blood cholesterol levels – may have the happy side effect of reducing the incidence of bowel cancer.
The small study of 100 people with bowel cancer and 132 healthy adults has shown that those taking statins were 57 per cent less likely to develop a tumour in the bowel.
Additionally, the risk of developing cancer fell by more than 80 per cent in patients taking higher statin doses as well as those who have taken the drug for more than five years.
While this is an encouraging development, earlier studies in this area have shown mixed results on the relationships between statins and bowel cancer.
Julien Wiggins, chief executive, Bowel Cancer Australia said, “this is certainly an interesting study but it’s one of the many where we must say further research is required before the results can be considered conclusive.”