Home Colorectal Cancer It’s Possible Blood Pressure Medication Could Reduce Colorectal Cancer Risk

It’s Possible Blood Pressure Medication Could Reduce Colorectal Cancer Risk

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New Research Shows Promise

  • New research shows that people who took medicines generally prescribed for blood pressure and other heart conditions were less likely to get colorectal cancer.
  • This is the first study to show the potential benefits of these drugs on colorectal cancer development.
  • The study worked with a notably large group of participants: 185,000.

There’s some potentially good news for people with a family history, or other risk factors, for colorectal cancer: Medications used to treat high blood pressure might reduce the risk for getting it.

New research published in the American Heart Association’s journal, Hypertension, suggests that drugs prescribed commonly for conditions like high blood pressure, heart failure, or heart disease might reduce that risk, at least over the short term. The medicines include ACE inhibitors (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, which keep your blood vessels from narrowing so your heart doesn’t have to work as hard) and ARBs (angiotensin II receptor blockers, which help relax your veins and arteries).

“The roles of ACE inhibitors and ARBs on cancer development are controversial and, in some cases, study findings are conflicting,” the study’s author Dr. Wai K. Leung, noted in a press release. He noted that previous studies have been limited by various factors — like a small number of patients, and data only from short-term followups. But now, he wrote, “Our results provide new insights on a potential role of these medications for colorectal cancer prevention.”

RELATED: Colorectal Cancer Is On The Rise in Young Adults — Here’s What We Know

The good news from the study is that patients who took these medications saw a 22 percent lower risk of developing colorectal cancer in the following three years. The biggest benefit of these drugs also appeared to benefit patients 55 years or older and those with a history of colon polyps.

About the Study

This was a very extensive study: It went back over an eight-year period and analyzed health records of 185,000 patients in Hong Kong between 2005 and 2013; the analysis of the colorectal cancer benefit was limited to the first three years after a negative baseline colonoscopy.

We reached out to Dr. Despina Siolas, a medical oncologist at NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center and assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at NYU Langone Health, to ask just how promising these results seemed.

She says the word she’d choose to describe the results is “intriguing” — noting that significant further study is needed.

“We need more data in humans in clinical trials to see what kind of cancers and in what setting, prevention or actual treatment,” she says. “So I think it builds upon previous work but it’s not conclusive enough to switch your medications if you’re taking something else.”

Lowering Your Risk of Colon Cancer 

Other Cancer and Blood Pressure Drug Studies

It’s the first study to show potential benefits of ACE inhibitors and ARBs on colorectal cancer development, based on a large group of patients, all of whom were colorectal cancer free at the beginning of the study.

But other researchers have already been looking at how this class of drugs might impact various types of cancer.

“There have been studies in the past showing that this class of medication may be beneficial in different types of cancers,” Dr. Siolas says. “In fact, we actually have a clinical trial open right now at NYU testing this medication in patients with already diagnosed pancreatic cancer… obviously based on other studies. So this adds another piece to the growing work looking at this class of medication and cancer.”

What’s Next

In the next phase of study, the authors hope to verify the results with a randomized controlled study, which would follow patients taking these medications and analyze the potential effects on their colorectal cancer risks.

For now, Dr. Siolas says, “We still have to make decisions based on prospective randomized trials — meaning a little bit stronger data before we tell people to switch their meds.”

“I wouldn’t switch any medication or start taking any unnecessary medication, and I would definitely follow up with regular colonoscopies, but I think it’s something we should look at in the future,” she adds. “It’s encouraging but needs more work.”


Learn more about SurvivorNet’s rigorous medical review process.


Alesandra Dubin is a freelance writer covering health, wellness, and other lifestyle topics. Read More

New Research Shows Promise

  • New research shows that people who took medicines generally prescribed for blood pressure and other heart conditions were less likely to get colorectal cancer.
  • This is the first study to show the potential benefits of these drugs on colorectal cancer development.
  • The study worked with a notably large group of participants: 185,000.

There’s some potentially good news for people with a family history, or other risk factors, for colorectal cancer: Medications used to treat high blood pressure might reduce the risk for getting it.

New research published in the American Heart Association’s journal, Hypertension, suggests that drugs prescribed commonly for conditions like high blood pressure, heart failure, or heart disease might reduce that risk, at least over the short term. The medicines include ACE inhibitors (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, which keep your blood vessels from narrowing so your heart doesn’t have to work as hard) and ARBs (angiotensin II receptor blockers, which help relax your veins and arteries).

Read More

“The roles of ACE inhibitors and ARBs on cancer development are controversial and, in some cases, study findings are conflicting,” the study’s author Dr. Wai K. Leung, noted in a press release. He noted that previous studies have been limited by various factors — like a small number of patients, and data only from short-term followups. But now, he wrote, “Our results provide new insights on a potential role of these medications for colorectal cancer prevention.”

RELATED: Colorectal Cancer Is On The Rise in Young Adults — Here’s What We Know

The good news from the study is that patients who took these medications saw a 22 percent lower risk of developing colorectal cancer in the following three years. The biggest benefit of these drugs also appeared to benefit patients 55 years or older and those with a history of colon polyps.

About the Study

This was a very extensive study: It went back over an eight-year period and analyzed health records of 185,000 patients in Hong Kong between 2005 and 2013; the analysis of the colorectal cancer benefit was limited to the first three years after a negative baseline colonoscopy.

We reached out to Dr. Despina Siolas, a medical oncologist at NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center and assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at NYU Langone Health, to ask just how promising these results seemed.

She says the word she’d choose to describe the results is “intriguing” — noting that significant further study is needed.

“We need more data in humans in clinical trials to see what kind of cancers and in what setting, prevention or actual treatment,” she says. “So I think it builds upon previous work but it’s not conclusive enough to switch your medications if you’re taking something else.”

Lowering Your Risk of Colon Cancer 

Other Cancer and Blood Pressure Drug Studies

It’s the first study to show potential benefits of ACE inhibitors and ARBs on colorectal cancer development, based on a large group of patients, all of whom were colorectal cancer free at the beginning of the study.

But other researchers have already been looking at how this class of drugs might impact various types of cancer.

“There have been studies in the past showing that this class of medication may be beneficial in different types of cancers,” Dr. Siolas says. “In fact, we actually have a clinical trial open right now at NYU testing this medication in patients with already diagnosed pancreatic cancer… obviously based on other studies. So this adds another piece to the growing work looking at this class of medication and cancer.”

What’s Next

In the next phase of study, the authors hope to verify the results with a randomized controlled study, which would follow patients taking these medications and analyze the potential effects on their colorectal cancer risks.

For now, Dr. Siolas says, “We still have to make decisions based on prospective randomized trials — meaning a little bit stronger data before we tell people to switch their meds.”

“I wouldn’t switch any medication or start taking any unnecessary medication, and I would definitely follow up with regular colonoscopies, but I think it’s something we should look at in the future,” she adds. “It’s encouraging but needs more work.”

Learn more about SurvivorNet’s rigorous medical review process.


Alesandra Dubin is a freelance writer covering health, wellness, and other lifestyle topics. Read More

https://www.survivornet.com/articles/its-possible-blood-pressure-medication-could-reduce-colorectal-cancer-risk/

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