cholesterol-lowering drug Vytorin and cancer

September 3, 2008 at 8:47 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
The editors of a leading medical journal cautioned Tuesday that, without more data, it’s impossible to rule out a link between the cholesterol-lowering drug Vytorin and cancer.

The cancer link surfaced unexpectedly in July in three studies designed to show whether the drug prevents deaths from heart attacks and strokes. Researchers found evidence that patients who took Vytorin appear to have at least a 40% greater risk of dying from cancer than those who took a placebo. A separate statistical analysis of the data, however, concluded that the link wasn’t credible.

“You should not just brush this aside,” says Jeffrey Drazen, editor of The New England Journal of Medicine, who wrote the editorial along with four other editors, two of whom are statisticians.

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