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Statins Cost Four Times More in U.S. Than in U.K.

Posted 13 Jan 2012 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Jan. 13 – Widely used cholesterol-lowering statin drugs cost about 400 percent more in the United States than in the United Kingdom, a new study shows. Prescription drug costs are a major issue in the ongoing debate about health costs in both the United States and the U.K., noted the researchers at the Boston University School of Medicine Boston Collaborative Drug Surveillance Program. For this study, they compared 2005 data from 280,000 people aged 55 to 64 in both countries and found that statins were prescribed to nearly 33 percent of those in the United States and more than 25 percent of those in the U.K. In the United States, the estimated annual cost of statins ranged from a high of $1,428 for simvastatin to a low of $314 for lovastatin. The annual cost of statins in the U.K. varied from a high of $500 for atorvastatin to a low of $164 for simvastatin. The total estimated ... Read more

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

Statins May Boost Diabetes Risk in Older Women

Posted 9 Jan 2012 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 9 – Statin medications used by women after menopause appear to increase their risk of developing diabetes, according to a large, new study. The research echoes findings of other studies linking the cholesterol-lowering drugs with an increased diabetes risk in men and women. Statins include drugs such as Lipitor, Lescol and Mevacor. "We found statins increased the risk of diabetes about 48 percent after adjusting for different risk factors such as family history of diabetes, body mass index and [physical] activity," said Dr. Yunsheng Ma, associate professor of medicine and an epidemiologist at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, Mass. "It's a moderate risk," he said. However, the study found an association, not a cause and effect. The authors stressed that the findings – published online Jan. 9 in the Archives of Internal Medicine – are not a ... Read more

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

Poor Lifestyles Harming U.S. Heart Health: Report

Posted 15 Dec 2011 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 15 – Americans' heart health is in a woeful state, says this year's report card from the American Heart Association. And it's largely because people just aren't taking care of themselves. In the past three or so decades, women have upped their calorie consumption by 22 percent and men by 10 percent, with carbohydrates and sugar-sweetened beverages both major sources of unneeded calories. The inevitable result is that more than two-thirds of U.S. adults and about one-third of children are over the ideal body weight, the extra layers of fat putting a major strain on Americans' hearts. The trend is particularly concerning in children. Today, about 20 percent of U.S. kids are obese, compared with just 4 percent 30 years ago. Neither adults nor children are exercising enough and about 21 percent of men and 18 percent of women still smoke. About one-fifth of high school ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Hypertension, Heart Disease, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Pravachol, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Fluvastatin, Altoprev

Could Statins Help Those Hospitalized With Flu?

Posted 14 Dec 2011 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 14 – Statins, the drugs that can dramatically lower cholesterol levels, may one day also prove useful in combating serious cases of the flu. A preliminary study in the Journal of Infectious Diseases finds that patients hospitalized with influenza were less likely to die if they were taking a statin, compared with their peers who weren't taking one of the drugs. The effect held even after adjusting for heart disease. But it's far too soon to consider adding statins to the existing anti-flu armamentarium, the authors stated. "At this point, statins should not become the standard of care for people hospitalized with the flu," cautioned study co-author Dr. Ann Thomas, a public health physician with the Oregon Public Health Division in Portland. "We would like to see more studies, [and] I think it would be worthwhile to do these studies." Right now, preventive vaccinations ... Read more

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

Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs Safe for Long-Term Use, Study Finds

Posted 23 Nov 2011 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 22 – British researchers have good news for anyone taking the cholesterol-lowering medications known as statins: These drugs are effective and safe, even when used for long periods of time, they say. The 11-year study found that simvastatin (brand name Zocor) reduced the risk of cardiovascular disease by almost one-quarter. In addition, the researchers found no increase in illness or deaths from cancer or other non-vascular causes. "All those at increased vascular risk should start taking statins early and continue taking them long term," said the study's lead author, Dr. Richard Bulbulia, a consultant vascular surgeon and research fellow in the clinical trial service unit at the University of Oxford in England. "This will maximize the reductions in heart attacks, strokes and other vascular diseases, and is safe," said Bulbulia, who added that the study's findings should ... Read more

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

Statins Don't Raise Risk of Brain Bleeds After Stroke: Study

Posted 13 Sep 2011 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 13 – Statins, a widely prescribed class of drugs used to lower cholesterol, are not linked to an increased chance of brain bleeds in people who've had strokes, new research finds. Statins are commonly prescribed to people who've had an ischemic stroke, caused by blocked blood flow to the brain, to reduce the risk of another stroke. But two previous reviews raised concerns that statins might also raise the risk of bleeding in the brain. "We found no evidence that such patients are at higher risk for cerebral bleeding than individuals who do not receive statins," the authors wrote. "Physicians should continue to adhere to current treatment guidelines recommending statin therapy for most patients with a history of ischemic stroke." The study is published online in the Sept. 12 issue of the Archives of Neurology Researchers in Canada analyzed data on nearly 18,000 patients ... Read more

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

Mainstay Meds Often Cut Off Accidentally After Hospital Stay

Posted 23 Aug 2011 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 23 – Many patients who are hospitalized fail to receive their regular medications for chronic conditions during their stay and often fail to restart them when they're discharged, researchers say. Patients treated in the intensive care unit (ICU) are even less likely to resume their regular medication schedule after discharge, probably because there are so many "transitions of care" to different units within the hospital and so many different care teams involved, the study found. "Sometimes we do a pretty good job of taking care of people in the hospital, but we don't do a great job of making the transition back to the community," said Dr. Chaim Bell, lead author of a study published in the Aug. 24/31 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. "That can lead to whole host of problems." Unintended discontinuation of vital medications can lead to another ... Read more

Related support groups: GERD, Asthma, Synthroid, Levothyroxine, Hypothyroidism, High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Underactive Thyroid, Pravastatin, Atorvastatin, Levoxyl, Zocor, Lovastatin, Levothroid, Rosuvastatin, Eltroxin, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice

Statins May Help Heart in Some Young Stroke Patients

Posted 2 Aug 2011 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 2 – Statins, a class of cholesterol-lowering drugs that includes Liptor and Crestor, appear to help young people after they've had a certain kind of stroke with unknown cause, a new study has found. Strokes are rare in young people, and it's even more uncommon for them to occur without a known cause. In the study, published in the Aug. 2 issue of the journal Neurology, Finnish researchers focused on 215 people who suffered strokes between the ages of 15 and 49 during the years 1994 through 2007. It wasn't clear why their strokes happened. All were "ischemic," meaning they occurred due to blockage of blood vessels. The study authors sought to figure out whether being on a statin – a medication that targets "bad" low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol – would help stroke patients avoid heart-related problems, such as heart attack, in the future. They followed the ... Read more

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

Statins Don't Seem to Raise Cancer Risk

Posted 18 Jul 2011 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 18 – A large, new study appears to quell concerns that taking statins might raise the risk of cancer. Among approximately 91,000 adults whose full medical records were available via an electronic database, researchers report there was no significant difference in cancer risk among those who took statins and those who didn't. After an average of five years of follow-up among nearly 46,000 pairs of people who either used the cholesterol-lowering drugs or did not use them, 11.37 percent of participants taking a statin developed cancer, compared to 11.11 percent of those individuals not taking a statin, according to the study in the July 15 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. A common survival curve plotted for any cancer diagnosis up to 10 years also showed no difference between the two groups, the researchers reported. The study authors noted that due ... Read more

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

High-Dose Statins May Increase Diabetes Risk

Posted 22 Jun 2011 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, June 21 – High doses of the widely popular cholesterol-lowering drugs known as statins may have a downside. A new meta-analysis finds that intensive doses of statins, such as Lipitor and Zocor, upped the risk of being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes compared with moderate doses of the drugs. But the review still revealed a lower incidence of heart attacks, stroke and death, meaning the balance remains tipped in favor of taking statins to protect your heart. "The benefit with respect to heart protection still favors high-dose statins because those taking high doses of statins often have heart disease so are at very high risk of further events," said Dr. Kausik K. Ray, senior author of a paper published in the June 22/29 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. "Patients should get annual checks of blood sugars and, if elevated, be treated appropriately," added ... Read more

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

Pneumonia Death Rate Lower Among People Who Take Statins

Posted 5 Apr 2011 by Drugs.com

LONDON, 5 April 2011-LSHTM study finds evidence for protective effect of cholesterol-lowering medication Taking statins could help prevent people dying from pneumonia, according to a study by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. The researchers found that the risk of death in the six month period after diagnosis of pneumonia was substantially lower among those who were already receiving the cholesterol-lowering drugs compared with those who were not. Previous studies have suggested that statins may be associated with a more favourable outcome after bacterial infection. This study, published online in the BMJ today, supports a possible protective effect of statins against mortality in patients with pneumonia. But the researchers point out that as they looked at patients who were already taking the medication when they developed pneumonia, a randomised clinical trial is ... Read more

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

Statins Might Help HIV Patients, Study Suggests

Posted 24 Feb 2011 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 24 – Preliminary research suggests that statins restrain the immune systems of HIV patients and may stave off progression of the AIDS-causing virus. Although it's too soon to recommend the drug for this purpose, the findings of this small study raise the possibility that "there might be drugs that can help adjust the immune response in HIV patients whether they're taking AIDS medications or not," said Dr. Brian Agan, director of HIV research with the Infectious Disease Clinical Research Program at the Uniformed Services University in Bethesda, Md. He works with some of the study's authors. It's not unusual for HIV patients to take these cholesterol-lowering drugs, because the medications commonly used to combat HIV can cause cholesterol levels to skyrocket. Scientists have wondered if statins' anti-inflammatory properties might have benefits for HIV patients besides ... Read more

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

Blood Protein Level May Not Influence Effectiveness of Statins

Posted 28 Jan 2011 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Jan. 28 – A new study debunks the idea that the cholesterol-fighting drugs known as statins work better in people with high levels of a certain protein and may not work at all in those with low levels. Researchers found that the drugs work the same – at least in heart patients, older men with high blood pressure and diabetics – regardless of the results of a test that looks for concentrations of so-called C-reactive protein. "The bottom line is, if you have vascular disease or diabetes, you will derive substantial benefit from statin treatment," said Dr. Gregg C. Fonarow, a cardiology professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, who was not involved in the research. However, Fonarow said, the findings do not say whether levels of the protein will affect the effectiveness of the drugs in healthy people. According to Fonarow, research suggests that statins reduce the ... Read more

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

No Evidence That Statins Benefit 'Worried Well' Patients, Says Study

Posted 20 Jan 2011 by Drugs.com

From Scotsman, The (Scotland) (January 20, 2011) SCOTTISH experts have backed a report claiming there is no evidence supporting widespread use of cholesterol-lowering statins in otherwise healthy patients. The drugs, championed by pharmaceutical firms, are highly effective at reducing blood cholesterol and are routinely given to people with heart disease. But some GPs also advocate their wider use for patients who fall into a higher-risk category for heart disease - if they have a family history of the illness, or high blood pressure. It has also been claimed many healthy doctors take it themselves on a precautionary basis. Heart charities, patients' groups and GPs all warned that "worried well" people considering taking statins - which are available in low doses over the counter from pharmacies - should take advice from their doctors before beginning the drug and consider making ... Read more

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

Statins May Be Harmful After Stroke

Posted 11 Jan 2011 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Jan. 10 – Patients given cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins after suffering a stroke caused by bleeding in the brain may be at an increased risk of having another such stroke, a new study suggests. It is well-known that statins help reduce the risk of heart disease and ischemic stroke, where a clot blocks a blood vessel in the brain. However, whether statins also benefit patients who have had a hemorrhagic (bleeding) stroke is unclear. Lead researcher Dr. Steven M. Greenberg, director of the Hemorrhagic Stroke Research Program at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, said that "there is a group of patients who have to think carefully about whether they are getting benefit from being on a statin. Those are people who have had a hemorrhagic stroke and survived it and are trying to figure out how to prevent future disease." "For some of those people, the risk of being ... Read more

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

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