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Rosenberg L, Rao RS, Palmer JR, et al. Calcium Channel Blockers and the Risk of Cancer. JAMA. 1998;279(13):1000–1004. doi:10.1001/jama.279.13.1000
From the Slone Epidemiology Unit, School of Public Health, Boston University School of Medicine, Brookline, Mass (Drs Rosenberg, Palmer, and Shapiro and Ms Rao); Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology, and Division of General Internal Medicine of the Department of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia (Dr Strom); Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore (Dr Stolley); Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY (Dr Zauber); and Department of Public Health, Cornell Medical Center, New York Hospital, New York, NY (Dr Warshauer).
Context.— Recent epidemiologic studies have raised the concern that calcium channel
blocker use may increase the risk of cancer overall and of several specific
Objective.— To assess whether calcium channel blocker use increases the risk of
cancer overall and of specific cancers.
Design.— Case-control drug surveillance study based on data collected from 1983
Setting.— Hospitals in Baltimore, Md, New York, NY, and Philadelphia, Pa.
Patients.— A total of 9513 patients aged 40 to 69 years with incident cancer of
various sites and 6492 controls aged 40 to 69 years admitted for nonmalignant
Main Outcome Measures.— Incident cancer overall and 23 specific cancers.
Results.— Calcium channel blocker use was unrelated to the risk of cancer overall
(relative risk [RR], 1.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.9-1.3). Use was
not significantly associated with increased risks of individual cancers, including
those previously implicated, except cancer of the kidney (RR, 1.8; 95% CI,
1.1-2.7). Recent use, use for 5 or more years, and use of individual calcium
channel blocker drugs were also not associated with cancer incidence. Use
of β-blockers and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors was generally
unrelated to cancer overall or individual cancers, but both were associated
with kidney cancer (RR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.3-2.5; and RR, 1.9; 95% CI, 1.2-3.0,
Conclusions.— The present study suggests that the use of calcium channel blockers
is unrelated to an increase in the overall risk of cancer or of individual
cancers, except kidney cancer, which has been associated with hypertension
or drugs to treat hypertension in previous studies.
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