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Specialists judge about statins: cholesterol-lowering drug are much recommended to often

Doctors complain: to statins, there are No uniform recommendations

On the one hand, the preventive use can lower of Cholesterol-lowering drugs (statins) on the risk of subsequent cardiovascular disease. On the other hand, it can come in the field of medicines to a series of dangerous side effects such as cataracts, liver damage or Diabetes. Where is the point at which the Benefit is greater than the danger of side effects? Experts criticize that there is currently no uniform guidelines, and the statins are much prescribed too often.

Milo Puhan is a Professor of epidemiology and Public Health at the University of Zurich. He investigated with his Team in a study, when the ingestion of Cholesterol-lowering drugs is useful. The expert team noted that at the time, many of the statins and prescribed are recommended. Many patients had more disadvantages than Benefits. The study results were recently published in the journal “Annals of Internal Medicine”.

To many healthy people take a cholesterol-lowering drug

Physicians, even healthy people, cholesterol-lowering drugs, although no signs of heart existence of diseases. This type of preventive intake was already discussed controversially for years among specialists. “In the end, is thereby avoided only to a few people, a heart attack or a stroke,” says Professor Puhan in a press release of the study results. In contrast, the risk for all people to severe side effects.

The lack of guidelines and controversial recommendations

The Swiss experts to explain, as it comes in the normal case of a recommendation for the taking: The treating doctor would be calculated from a number of different risk factors, such as, for example, the level of cholesterol, the body mass index (BMI) and Smoking Status, the risk is that the affected Person suffers in the next ten years, a heart attack or stroke. At this point, there are many controversial recommendations of different institutions. The threshold values at which a dose is to be recommended, vary according to the University of Zurich between 7.5 and 20 percent.

Current recommendations are misleading?

“In accordance with such recommendations would need to earn about one – third of all 40-to 75-Year-old preventive cholesterol-lowering drug”, conclude the researchers. Worldwide, this would amount to several hundred million people. The wide discrepancy between the various recommendations, according to the research group in mind that the threshold values have been established without systematic studies. Also, the part of serious side effects such as muscle pain, cataracts, liver damage, and Diabetes were taken into account in current recommendations hardly or not at all.

To take Advantage of the first comprehensive study of the risks and

To find a good Balance between the Benefits and the harmful side-effects, conducted by the research team of Professor Puhan now for the first time, a comprehensive statistical modelling of the intake of statins. The Team calculated taking into account the side-effects of new thresholds for men and women in different age groups between 40 and 75 years.

Every second takes up free cholesterol-lowering drug?

“It has been shown that statins recommended today, probably too often, werden“, Puhan says. According to the calculations of the expert group, the number of people taking cholesterol-lowering drugs can be cut in half. According to the study, in particular, the Benefits for the elderly has been greatly overestimated. The calculations came to the results that Year in the age group of 70 to 75-from a threshold value of 21 per cent, lohne, statins. In the age group of 40 to 45 Years, the experts calculated a threshold value of 14 percent for men and 17 percent for women.

Some preparations showed a significantly better Balance

The researchers also took four common Statin-based drugs under the microscope. This showed that not all remedies have the same ratio between the Benefits and the risks. According to the Swiss experts, the cholesterol-lowering drug Atorvastatin and Rosuvastati showed a much better balance between Benefit and harm, than the other two studied preparations of Simvastatin and Pravastatin. The specialists recommend that the preventive use of statins carefully with the doctor to be weighed.