Aspirin and statin nonuse associated with early biochemical failure after prostate radiation therapy

Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2012 Sep 1;84(1):e13-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ijrobp.2012.02.050. Epub 2012 May 30.


Purpose: To present the largest retrospective series investigating the effect of aspirin and statins, which are hypothesized to have antineoplastic properties, on biochemical failure (nadir plus 2 ng/mL) after prostate radiation therapy (RT).

Methods and materials: Between 1989 and 2006, 2051 men with clinically localized prostate cancer received definitive RT alone (median dose, 76 Gy). The rates of aspirin use and statin use (defined as any use at the time of RT or during follow-up) were 36% and 34%, respectively. The primary endpoint of the study was an interval to biochemical failure (IBF) of less than 18 months, which has been shown to be the single strongest predictor of distant metastasis, prostate cancer survival, and overall survival after RT. Patient demographic characteristics and tumor staging factors were assessed with regard to associations with the endpoint. Univariate analysis was performed with the χ(2) test for categorical variables and the Wilcoxon test for continuous variables. Multivariable analysis was performed with a multiple logistic regression.

Results: The median follow-up was 75 months. Univariate analysis showed that an IBF of less than 18 months was associated with aspirin nonuse (P<.0001), statin nonuse (P<.0001), anticoagulant nonuse (P=.0006), cardiovascular disease (P=.0008), and prostate-specific antigen (continuous) (P=.008) but not with Gleason score, age, RT dose, or T stage. On multivariate analysis, only aspirin nonuse (P=.0012; odds ratio, 2.052 [95% confidence interval, 1.328-3.172]) and statin nonuse (P=.0002; odds ratio, 2.465 [95% confidence interval, 1.529-3.974]) were associated with an IBF of less than 18 months.

Conclusions: In patients who received RT for prostate cancer, aspirin or statin nonuse was associated with early biochemical failure, a harbinger of distant metastasis and death. Further study is needed to confirm these findings and to determine the optimal dosing and schedule, as well as the relative benefits and risks, of both therapies in combination with RT.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenocarcinoma / blood
  • Adenocarcinoma / drug therapy
  • Adenocarcinoma / mortality
  • Adenocarcinoma / pathology
  • Adenocarcinoma / radiotherapy*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Anticoagulants / administration & dosage
  • Antineoplastic Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Aspirin / administration & dosage*
  • Humans
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / administration & dosage*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen / blood
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / blood
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / mortality
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / pathology
  • Prostatic Neoplasms / radiotherapy*
  • Radiotherapy Dosage
  • Regression Analysis
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Time Factors


  • Anticoagulants
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors
  • Prostate-Specific Antigen
  • Aspirin