A clinical study called SEAS has shown a link between Vytorin and cancer. Vytorin is a cholesterol-lowering drug, that is prescribed to millions of people. The SEAS study was done to determine whether Vytorin could help prevent further heart problems in people with heart-valve disease. The results of the study did not demonstrate that benefit. Instead, the lead investigator of the study found a link to increased cancer risk. Vytorin combines Zetia with a statin in a single pill. Vytorin and Zetia, sold by Merck and Schering-Plough, are among the top-selling drugs around the world. The cholesterol-lowering power of Vytorin prompted its approval in 2004. However, some physicians are expressing caution about the drug in light of the SEAS findings, despite the absence of a cancer link in two other Vytorin studies. The doctors who express concern say that more trial evidence is needed to definitively establish Vytorin’s safety. There are currently two ongoing large-scale clinical trials comparing Vytorin to simvastatin or Zocor. Some physicians are urging that only patients who can’t sufficiently lower their cholesterol with a statin, should use Vytorin.
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