Tag Archives: statin benefit


14 June 2010: neil.burman@gmail.com:

 The statin scam unravels:

In Effects of statins in men and women in England and Wales,  and Individualising the risks of statins in men and women in England and Wales Profs  Julia Hippisley-Cox and Carol Coupland from Nottingham University UK report  a landmark  population based cohort study :      In 368 general practices some 10% of the 2million adults aged 30 years upwards were new users of statins.

 In real life patients, (not in highly selected subjects for double blind  RCT randomized controlled trials), the study  shows the comparative numbers for benefits and risks of statins:  compared to patients on no statins,  statins were associated with (per 10 000 subjects treated with statins) :

 *not significantly associated with Parkinson’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, venous thromboembolism, dementia, osteoporotic fracture, melanoma or cancer of stomach, colon , lung , breast, kidney,or prostate.

*decreased risks of cardiovascular disease CVD:  271 cases prevented in women, 301 in men; and oesophageal cancer ;

*increased risks of moderate or serious: liver dysfunction 74 cases in women, 71 in men , acute renal failure 23cases in women, 29 in men, moderate or serious myopathy 39 cases in women, 110 in men; and cataract. 307 cases in women, 191 in men.

 thus they estimate that in total, in both sexes, CVD may be prevented in 286 but serious other disease caused in 50% more ie 422 cases.

But the study glaringly ignores, overlooks that statin use is not associated with two of the commonest risk factors for preventible major degenerative diseases of aging: no  reduction in increasing overweight- obesity, or diabetes .

Numerous analyses show that statins have justification  solely in patients with vascular disease, in whom they reduce all-cause mortality by some 16% and coronary heart mortality by up to 40% – but no reduction in non-vascular mortality. eg Wilt ea 2004 .

But in those without vascular disease and risk factors (smoking, obesity), vascular disease causes fewer than half of premature deaths; so statin use in such “primary prevention” population understandably has no significant benefit on reducing premature vascular mortality. Statins never significantly reduce non-vascular mortality – in fact Hippisley-Cox and Coupland show that non-vascular morbidity in creases by 50% more than the reduction in CVD.                                  So while there is  overall slight  reduction in all-cause  mortality,  there is highly significant increase in overall morbidity.

 So contrary to the UK professors  Wald and Law and the Statin industry who want statins to be available like aspirin over-the-counter, this major Nottingham University UK study contradicts  use of statins except with  severe resistant lipidemia- as occurs rarely due to genetic disease  in perhaps 1 in 70 South African Afrikaners.

Before focussing on mild to moderate hypercholesterolemia and prescribing statins – which in turn further reduce the vital antioxidant insulin sensitizer co-Q10 never mind essential cholesterol substrate  and thus precipitate all sorts of problems not least fatigue, myopathy and myolysis , doctors and society need to  address boldly the major risk factors, correction of which may reduce all-cause premature mortality by:

exercise – at least moderate and regular – by at least 25% ;

stopping smoking and alcoholism – each by perhaps half;

fish oil supplement perhaps 2gm omega3 a day – by almost half;

appropriate sex hormone replacement in deficient men and women by at least 1/3.

vigorous vitamins C,  D,  magnesium (with  broad other micronutrient  supplements) for widespread low intake- by perhaps 25 to 50% each;

avoiding obesity and diabetes including by using metformin to tolerance – by perhaps half.

Smoking, alcoholism and lack of exercise are cases  in point: they are  acquired addictions; so instead of being palliated with damaging statins, patients with vascular disease or major risk factors should  be compelled to undergo group therapy until exercising adequately and cured of  smoking, alcoholism  and the consequent weight gain and multisystem diseases  from bad food and bad  lifestyle choices.