Many people would have seen the recent media reports claiming that high cholesterol is a risk factor for breast cancer. The suggestion being that statins could be used to prevent breast cancer in the future.
What Dr Potluri of the University of Aston, who did the study, doesn’t know is that researchers from the USA have already studied the effect that statins have on breast cancer.
Researchers from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Washington found that statin use was associated with more than double the risk for breast cancer (both invasive ductal carcinoma and invasive lobular carcinoma).
Nowhere in the media reports was this mentioned. Not even the spokesperson for Breast Cancer Campaign seemed to know about this.
Also, Potluri’s ‘study’ is not published anywhere! It was simply presented at a cardiology conference. So we have no idea what data he analysed or how it was analysed. We know that he used a cholesterol level above 200mg/dl as being high, but we also know that most women in the UK naturally have a cholesterol level above this number anyway and this is perfectly normal for UK women. In any case, what is a cardiologist doing looking at breast cancer data, and presenting this data at a cardiology conference? Surely, he is just fishing for research money.
Dr Potluri is a complete disgrace to his profession and the general public deserve better integrity from the media.
Long-Term Statin Use and Risk of Ductal and Lobular Breast Cancer among Women 55 to 74 Years of Age Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev; 22(9); 1529–37. 2013