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Pravastatin Blog

Some Doctors Challenge New Statin Guidelines

Posted 18 Nov 2013 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Nov. 18, 2013 – A new online cholesterol risk calculator produced by two leading U.S. heart organizations is flawed and overstates a person's risk of heart disease, a pair of Harvard Medical School professors say. The professors contend that this flaw could lead the calculator to mistakenly suggest that millions of people should be taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, The New York Times reported Monday. Key officials with the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American College of Cardiology (ACC) stood by the calculator during a hastily gathered news conference Monday morning at the heart association's annual meeting in Dallas. Harvard professors Dr. Paul Ridker and Dr. Nancy Cook reportedly pointed out problems with the calculator a year ago, saying that it did not seem to work accurately when they tested it using patient data, the Times reported. When the online ... Read more

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New Guidelines for Heart Health: Reduce Obesity and Maintain Safe Cholesterol Levels

Posted 12 Nov 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 12 – Reducing obesity cuts heart-health risks, and new guidelines from experts may help doctors and their plus-sized patients devise an effective – and perhaps lifesaving – weight-loss plan. What works best are lifestyle changes, not crash diets, according to the guidelines, which were released Tuesday by the American Heart Association, the American College of Cardiology and the Obesity Society. "Our recommendation is that doctors prescribe a diet to achieve reduced caloric intake as part of a comprehensive lifestyle intervention," guideline co-author Dr. Donna Ryan, a professor emeritus at Louisiana State University's Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, said during a press conference. The diet should be tailored to patient preferences and any drugs they take, she said. Diet, physical activity and face-to-face behavioral counseling combined can lead to ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Diabetes, Type 2, Ischemic Stroke, High Cholesterol, Heart Attack, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Smoking Cessation, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Myocardial Infarction, Rosuvastatin, Gastric Bypass Surgery, Red Yeast Rice, Livalo, Pravachol, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction

Statin Use Linked to Lower Prostate Cancer Death Risk

Posted 5 Nov 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 5 – Prostate cancer patients who take the cholesterol-lowering drugs known as statins appear to face a lower risk of death from their disease, new Canadian research suggests. The decreased risk was strongest for those who were taking the statins before their cancer diagnosis, investigators found. In addition, the study also showed, statin use was associated with a lower risk for any cause of death. Despite the evidence, however, the study team called for more research to confirm the findings. "The results of our study suggest that the use of statins is associated with a decreased risk of prostate cancer mortality," said study co-author Laurent Azoulay, from Jewish General Hospital and McGill University in Montreal. "(But) overall, while our results are very promising, we believe that additional rigorous studies are needed before prescribing these agents to men with ... Read more

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Statins May Not Harm Memory, Thinking After All

Posted 1 Oct 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Oct. 1 – Here's some good, if preliminary, news for the millions of people who take statin drugs to lower their cholesterol: A new review of existing research finds no evidence that the medications pose a risk to brainpower. Instead, the review suggests that statins may actually lower the risk of dementia, although the researchers say that's not certain. The findings, which contradict a warning label required by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), aren't conclusive. And a physician who specializes in blood vessel disorders said it remains wise for doctors to take patients off the drugs or switch them if there are signs of cognitive (or "thinking") problems. Still, the new findings are "very reassuring," said study co-author Dr. Seth Martin, a cardiovascular prevention fellow at Johns Hopkins Hospital. At issue are the statin drugs – including well-known medications ... Read more

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Statins Linked to Raised Risk of Cataracts in Study

Posted 19 Sep 2013 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Sept. 19 – The statin medications that millions of adults take to lower their cholesterol levels may also raise their risk of developing cataracts, a new study suggests. This is the latest of several studies looking for a link between statins such as Lipitor and Zocor and cataracts, a clouding of the lens of the eye. The results to date have been conflicting and inconclusive, the researchers note. "Cataracts are a main cause of poor vision and blindness, specifically for the elderly," said lead investigator Dr. Ishak Mansi, of the VA North Texas Health System in Dallas. "This study cannot identify that statins cause cataracts; rather, it identifies statin use as associated with a higher risk of being diagnosed with cataract," he added. The report, published Sept. 19 in the online edition of JAMA Ophthalmology, involved almost 14,000 men and women, 6,972 pairs of statin users ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Cataract, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Pravachol, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Fluvastatin, Baycol, Pitavastatin, Altoprev

Should Everyone Over 65 Take a Statin?

Posted 28 Aug 2013 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 28 – Men and women over 65 who are at risk for cardiovascular disease but don't have any known heart problems might benefit from cholesterol-lowering drugs, a new study suggests. The researchers said statins such as Crestor and Lipitor can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke, although they don't seem to prevent death from cardiovascular disease or other causes over the short term. "This is the first time the benefit of these drugs has been demonstrated in this population of patients," said senior study author Dr. Pasquale Perrone-Filardi, from the department of advanced biomedical sciences at Federico II University in Naples, Italy. These findings fill a gap in current guidelines, Perrone-Filardi said. To date, there has been no firm evidence that statins benefit patients who haven't had a heart attack or stroke, he said. There also has been no evidence showing ... Read more

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Statin Use May Reduce Parkinson's Risk, Study Says

Posted 24 Jul 2013 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 24 – Millions of Americans take statins to lower their stroke and heart attack risks, but new research from Taiwan suggests the drug may offer another health benefit: cutting the odds of developing Parkinson's disease. Analyzing nearly 44,000 patients, scientists found that those who discontinued taking fat-soluble statins such as simvastatin (Zocor) or atorvastatin (Lipitor) were about 58 percent more likely to develop Parkinson's than those who kept taking the drugs. Fat-soluble statins are believed to cross the blood-brain barrier, unlike water-soluble statins such as rosuvastatin (Crestor) and pravastatin (Pravachol). The drugs may decrease inflammation and even modify dopamine pathways in the brain, which are linked to Parkinson's, the study authors suggested. "We are more glad than surprised to demonstrate the relationship," said study author Dr. Jou-Wei Lin, a ... Read more

Related support groups: Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Parkinson's Disease, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Red Yeast Rice, Livalo, Pravachol, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Baycol, Fluvastatin, Altoprev, Pitavastatin, Altocor

Most Statin Users Won't Have Major Side Effects

Posted 9 Jul 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 9 – Statins – the widely used cholesterol-lowering drugs – have few serious side effects, although they do slightly raise the risk of type 2 diabetes, according to a large new evidence review. In the analysis of 135 previous studies, which included nearly 250,000 people combined, researchers found that the drugs simvastatin (Zocor) and pravastatin (Pravachol) had the fewest side effects in this class of medications. They also found that lower doses produced fewer side effects in general. "As with any drugs, statins have both benefits and harms," said study lead author Huseyin Naci, a doctoral candidate at the London School of Economics and Political Science. "We show that harmful side effects of statins are not common, and they are greatly outweighed by their benefits," said Naci, also a research fellow in the department of population medicine at Harvard Medical School ... Read more

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Stronger Statins Don't Up Kidney Injury Risk, Study Finds

Posted 19 Jun 2013 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 19 – A higher dose of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs did not increase the risk of kidney injury in heart attack survivors, according to preliminary study findings. Statins have been shown to reduce the risk of a first heart attack or repeat ones, but some recent studies have suggested that higher doses of the drugs may be linked to a higher incidence of kidney injury. To investigate the issue, researchers analyzed data from two large clinical trials in which thousands of heart attack survivors received either high- or low-dose statins. The investigators found that higher doses did not increase the risk of hospitalization for treatment of kidney injury. The study also found that concentrations of a blood protein called creatinine – an indicator of kidney function – were comparable between the high- and low-dose statin groups during follow-up. The findings were ... Read more

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Statins Plus Certain Antibiotics May Set Off Toxic Reaction: Study

Posted 17 Jun 2013 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 17 – Doctors should avoid ordering certain antibiotics for older patients who take cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, such as Lipitor, Canadian researchers say. Statins, which are taken by many millions of people, don't mix well with the antibiotics clarithromycin or erythromycin, according to a study, published in the June 18 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine. These two commonly used antibiotics inhibit the metabolism of statins and increase statin concentration in the blood, which can cause muscle or kidney damage, and even death, the researchers said. "These drugs do interact and cause difficulties for patients," said lead researcher Dr. Amit Garg, a professor in the department of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario. These adverse reactions are rare, Garg added. "Most people will be fine," he said. "But at a ... Read more

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Cholesterol Drugs Linked to Muscle, Joint Problems: Study

Posted 3 Jun 2013 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 3 – People taking statin drugs to lower their cholesterol may slightly increase their risk for muscle and joint diseases as well as strains and sprains, a new study suggests. Statins, such as Zocor and Lipitor, are widely used to reduce cholesterol levels and help prevent heart disease. But they're also thought to contribute to muscle weakness, muscle cramps and tendon problems. This new study, based on nearly 14,000 U.S. active-duty soldiers and veterans, confirmed an association between the drugs' use and musculoskeletal injuries and diseases. But the findings need to be replicated in other types of studies and should not deter people at risk of heart disease from taking the medications, said lead researcher Dr. Ishak Mansi, from the VA North Texas Health Care System in Dallas. "Do not stop taking statins; these medications have been life-savers for some patients," Mansi ... Read more

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Could Statins Raise Diabetes Risk?

Posted 23 May 2013 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 23 – Certain statins – the widely used cholesterol-lowering drugs – may increase your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, a new study suggests. The risk was greatest for patients taking atorvastatin (brand name Lipitor), rosuvastatin (Crestor) and simvastatin (Zocor), the study said. Focusing on almost 500,000 Ontario residents, researchers in Canada found that the overall odds of developing diabetes were low in patients prescribed statins. Still, people taking Lipitor had a 22 percent higher risk of new-onset diabetes, Crestor users had an 18 percent increased risk and people taking Zocor had a 10 percent increased risk, relative to those taking pravastatin (Pravachol), which appears to have a favorable effect on diabetes. Physicians should weigh the risks and benefits when prescribing these medications, the researchers said in the study, which was published online ... Read more

Related support groups: Diabetes, Type 2, High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Pravachol, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Fluvastatin, Baycol, Pitavastatin, Altoprev

Statins May Hamper Workout Results

Posted 23 May 2013 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 23 – Statins are proven drugs taken by millions to lower their cholesterol, but the medications also could hamper heart patients' ability to improve their cardiovascular health through exercise, researchers say. A small group of overweight or obese people were unable to make any significant fitness gains while taking a 40 milligram daily dose of simvastatin, while another group not on the drug but undergoing the same exercise regimen did show improvement, found the study released online in advance of print publication in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. "If you exercise a group of people, they are going to have an increase in their fitness," said study author John Thyfault, an associate professor at the Clinical Research Center in the University of Missouri School of Medicine. "In our group who was only taking statins, the improvements were blocked or ... Read more

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Cholesterol Drugs Might Boost Kidney Cancer Survival

Posted 7 May 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, May 7 – Cholesterol-lowering statin drugs that are taken by millions of Americans might also improve survival from a type of kidney cancer called renal cell carcinoma, a new study suggests. Statins – drugs such as Crestor, Lipitor, Pravachol and Zocor – have anti-inflammatory and cell self-destruction properties, and previous research has shown that these drugs may lower the risk of developing some types of cancer. The new research, presented Tuesday at the annual meeting of the American Urological Association in San Diego, suggests that the drugs might fight kidney cancer. "Given that one in four Americans over 45 years of age take a statin and renal cell carcinoma occurs most often in men ages 50 to 70, it may be prudent to prospectively evaluate if statins protect against [cancer] progression," study author Dr. Scott Eggener, an associate professor of urologic oncology at ... Read more

Related support groups: Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Renal Cell Carcinoma, Rosuvastatin, Red Yeast Rice, Livalo, Pravachol, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Baycol, Fluvastatin, Altoprev, Pitavastatin, Altocor

High-Dose Statins Linked to Acute Kidney Damage

Posted 20 Mar 2013 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, March 19 – People who take high doses of popular cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins may be more likely to develop kidney problems, a new study suggests. Specifically, those participants who took higher doses of statins were 34 percent more likely to be hospitalized for acute kidney injury during the first 120 days of treatment, compared to their counterparts who were taking lower doses. This risk remained elevated two years after starting treatment. The findings appeared online March 19 in the journal BMJ. Statins are widely prescribed to lower blood cholesterol levels, and can be very effective. They do, however, confer their share of risks, most notably liver damage and muscle pain or weakness. Doctors currently recommend that people take a liver enzyme test before or shortly after they begin taking statins. The issue of kidney damage as seen in the current study, ... Read more

Related support groups: Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Red Yeast Rice, Livalo, Pravachol, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Baycol, Pitavastatin, Altoprev, Fluvastatin, Altocor, Cerivastatin

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