Antihypertensives show no association with pancreatic cancer risk in chronic pancreatitis

  • Kirkegård J & al.
  • Br J Cancer
  • 2 Sep 2019

  • International Clinical Digest
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Takeaway

  • Antihypertensive medications show no association with pancreatic cancer risk in patients with chronic pancreatitis.

Why this matters

  • Some studies had suggested that antihypertensives might act as anticancer agents, but these results indicate otherwise.

Key results

  • 26.4% of patients had been taking at least 1 antihypertensive at baseline.
  • Although the authors found differential risks with different antihypertensives (e.g., reduced risk with aldosterone receptor antagonists, increased risk with calcium channel blockers), they say the estimates are imprecise (wide 95% CIs).
  • They conclude that they found no measurable associations of these medications and pancreatic cancer risk in these patients during a total of 60,365 person-years of follow-up. 

Study design

  • National registry study, Denmark, covering data from 1996 to 2012 for 8311 patients diagnosed with chronic pancreatitis, measured against antihypertensive drug use.
  • Funding: Danish Cancer Society, others.

Limitations

  • Confounding by indication is possible, given the high rate of comorbidities in this population.
  • Pancreatic cancer was relatively rare (n=153).