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Could Statins Help Fight Cancer?

Posted 8 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 8, 2016 – Some cancer patients who take cholesterol-lowering statins may live longer than those not on these heart medications, a study from Britain suggests. While it did not prove a cause-and-effect connection, the study of nearly 1 million cancer patients found that those taking statin drugs such as Lipitor and Crestor appeared to have: a 22 percent lower risk of dying from lung cancer, a 43 percent lower risk of dying from breast cancer, a 47 percent lower risk of dying from prostate cancer, and a 30 percent lower risk of dying from colon cancer. "We need to further investigate the reasons for patients with high cholesterol having improved mortality in four of the most common cancers," said senior researcher Dr. Rahul Potluri, a clinical lecturer at Aston University School of Medicine in Birmingham. Potluri cautioned, however, that this study can't prove that statins ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Prostate Cancer, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Colorectal Cancer, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Pravachol, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Pitavastatin

Just a Little of Statins' Effect Enough to Help Heart: Study

Posted 20 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, June 20, 2016 – Giving high doses of statins to patients with heart disease doesn't lower the risk of future heart trouble any more than moderate doses of the cholesterol-lowering drugs do, a new study finds. Having heart disease raises the risk of heart attack and stroke, as blood vessels become clogged and cut the normal flow of blood and oxygen to the heart. These patients are typically prescribed statins on a long-term basis, to lower levels of vessel-clogging LDL ("bad") cholesterol. But experts remain conflicted about exactly how low LDL cholesterol levels should go. "Our study demonstrates that physicians treating patients with heart disease and elevated levels of cholesterol with statins have to ensure that patients meet a target of less than 100 mg/dL to prevent future [heart] events," said study author Dr. Morton Leibowitz. He is a senior physician with the Clalit ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Vytorin, Rosuvastatin, Pravachol, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Caduet, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Simcor, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor

No Statins Before Heart Surgery, Study Suggests

Posted 4 May 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 4, 2016 – Taking cholesterol-lowering statins right before heart surgery, once touted as a way to prevent common postoperative complications, has no benefit and may even cause harm, a new study suggests. In that setting, Crestor (rosuvastatin) did not prevent either the abnormal heart rhythm known as atrial fibrillation or heart damage, and it was linked to a slightly increased risk of kidney damage, researchers said. "There are many valid reasons why one may want to take statins, but prevention of postoperative complications in cardiac surgery is not one of them," said lead researcher Dr. Barbara Casadei. She is a professor of cardiovascular medicine at the University of Oxford in England. "Our study is consistent with the idea that well-established beneficial effects of statin therapy, such as the reduction in heart attacks and strokes, are only achieved by long-term ... Read more

Related support groups: Surgery, Heart Disease, Atrial Fibrillation, High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Renal Failure, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Chronic Kidney Disease, Hypertriglyceridemia, Pravachol, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Ischemic Heart Disease, Lescol

Many Heart Bypass Patients Don't Take Needed Meds

Posted 4 May 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 4, 2016 – Many heart bypass patients are skipping medications meant to maintain smooth blood flow in their repaired veins, a new study finds. "It is important for patients to understand that bypass surgery is a second chance, not a cure for their disease," Dr. Michael Savage, a professor of cardiology at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, said in a university news release. Research has shown that taking statins and aspirin helps keep vein grafts used in bypass surgery open over the long term, and the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association recommend taking both medications unless they are unsafe for a patient. But among the more than 400 patients in the study, only 52 percent were taking the recommended combination of statins and aspirin. Sixty-seven percent were taking just a statin and 75 percent were using aspirin only. Those who ... Read more

Related support groups: Aspirin, High Cholesterol, Heart Attack, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Angina, Excedrin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Myocardial Infarction, Aggrenox, Rosuvastatin, Alka-Seltzer, Fiorinal, Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), Excedrin Migraine, Angina Pectoris Prophylaxis

Statins Might Not Lower Colon Cancer Risk: Study

Posted 26 Apr 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 26, 2016 – Long-term use of cholesterol-lowering statins does not appear to reduce the risk of colon cancer, but a person's cholesterol levels might affect risk, a new study suggests. Both statins and cholesterol levels have been linked with lower colon cancer risk, but pinpointing which one is actually responsible has been difficult, the University of Pennsylvania researchers explained. So, they compared statin use and cholesterol levels in more than 22,000 British patients with colon cancer and more than 86,500 without the disease. The results confirmed findings from previous studies that showed a lower risk of colon cancer in people who take statins. But the risk was not significantly different between people who kept taking statins and those who stopped taking the drugs. Instead, the higher the cholesterol level, the lower the colon cancer risk for patients, ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Colonoscopy, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Colorectal Cancer, Lovastatin, Vytorin, Rosuvastatin, Pravachol, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Caduet, Simcor, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor

Skipping Meds Greatly Ups Heart Patients' Risk of Stroke: Study

Posted 28 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 28, 2016 – People at risk for heart disease are much more likely to die from a stroke if they don't take cholesterol-lowering statin drugs and blood pressure medications as prescribed, a new study reports. Folks with high blood pressure and high cholesterol had a seven times greater risk of suffering a fatal stroke if they didn't follow their drug regimen to lower cholesterol and blood pressure. The study findings were published online March 28 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Fatal stroke risk also increased if these patients stuck to one type of medication but not both, the researchers found. For example, if patients kept taking blood pressure medication but dropped their statins, their risk of dying from a stroke increased by 82 percent. Turning the tables, they had a 30 percent added risk of stroke if they took their statins but didn't take their ... Read more

Related support groups: Aspirin, Metoprolol, Ischemic Stroke, Atenolol, High Cholesterol, Heart Attack, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Propranolol, Crestor, Bystolic, Atorvastatin, Carvedilol, Pravastatin, Bisoprolol, Excedrin, Coreg, Inderal, Zocor, Sotalol

Gaps in Care Can Harm Patients After Heart Attack

Posted 23 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 23, 2016 – Heart attack patients who wait a long period to have a follow-up medical appointment after leaving the hospital are less likely to take their medications as prescribed, endangering their health. That's the finding of a new study of 21,000 Medicare patients over 65 who survived a heart attack. One heart doctor said timely care is key to a good recovery for these patients. "Many patients with heart attack are treated with coronary stents, and in those patients, missing their medications for more than a couple of days can be life-threatening," said Dr. Lawrence Ong, a cardiologist at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore, N.Y. The new study was led by Dr. Tracy Wang, of Duke Clinical Research Institute in Durham, N.C. The researchers noted that of the estimated 1 million Americans hospitalized with heart attack each year, 470,000 are expected to have another heart ... Read more

Related support groups: Aspirin, High Cholesterol, Heart Attack, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Excedrin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Myocardial Infarction, Aggrenox, Rosuvastatin, Alka-Seltzer, Fiorinal, Excedrin Migraine, Pravachol, Ecotrin, Livalo

Genetic High-Cholesterol Condition More Common Than Thought

Posted 14 Mar 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 14, 2016 – Twice as many people as previously thought are genetically predisposed to develop dangerously high cholesterol levels, new research suggests. Familial hypercholesterolemia, as this condition is called, significantly ups the risk for an early heart attack. The study found it affects about one in every 250 American men and women, rather than one in 500. The new numbers don't reflect a problem on the rise, however, said study author Dr. Sarah de Ferranti, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. Instead, the condition was previously "under-recognized," she explained. For those who have this potentially deadly condition, "it is extremely important to get early, consistent preventive care," de Ferranti said. "The key is for you and your clinician to understand and distinguish between mild to moderately high cholesterol that comes on in middle ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Zetia, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Ezetimibe, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL), Hyperlipoproteinemia, Lescol

Tips for Traveling to the U.S. With Medications

Posted 29 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

SATURDAY, Feb. 27, 2016 – Traveling to the United States with medications? Here's what you need to know to avoid problems. Americans traveling abroad are not allowed to bring home foreign versions of medications approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The FDA warned that it can't ensure these foreign drugs are safe and effective. There is also no way to confirm that medications are made properly using the same formulation as FDA-approved drugs. "As a pharmacist at the FDA, I advise people to remember that we at FDA cannot ensure that medications approved in other countries are safe or effective, or have been manufactured properly," Lindsay Wagner, an FDA pharmacist, said in an agency news release. When someone with a serious medical condition needs treatment with a foreign drug for which there is no U.S. equivalent, the FDA will review an application to import the drug for ... Read more

Related support groups: High Blood Pressure, Cancer, Hypertension, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Heart Failure, Congestive Heart Failure, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Pravachol, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Cardiovascular Conditions and Disorders, Lescol, Ischemic Heart Disease, Lescol XL

High-Dose Statins May Ease Macular Degeneration for Some

Posted 4 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 4, 2016 – High doses of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs – medicines such as Lipitor, Crestor and Zocor – may help people with a common eye disease called macular degeneration, a small study suggests. In the early stage clinical trial, a team from Harvard Medical School assessed the effects of statin treatment in people with the dry form of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). AMD affects more than 150 million people worldwide. The dry form is much more common and accounts for about 85 percent of cases, according to the researchers. Effective treatments are available for the wet form of AMD, but not the dry form, so dry-form AMD remains the leading cause of blindness in the developed world. In AMD, fat deposits form under the retina, so that patients develop blurring or blindness in the center of their vision. In the study, 23 patients with dry-form AMD were given ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Macular Degeneration, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, Pravachol, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Hyperlipoproteinemia, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Fluvastatin, Pitavastatin

Statins Aid Bypass Surgery Recovery, Research Shows

Posted 12 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Jan. 12, 2016 – Patients who take statins before and after heart bypass surgery have fewer complications and a reduced risk of dying during and soon after the operation, a new analysis finds. In a review of recent studies on the use of statins (such as Lipitor or Zocor) before and after bypass surgery, researchers found that the cholesterol-lowering drugs reduced the incidence of the abnormal heartbeat atrial fibrillation by 58 percent. In addition, statins also reduced the risk of dying in the hospital after the operation by 43 percent. "We think statins have these effects because they reduce inflammation," said researcher Dr. Islam Elgendy, of the division of cardiovascular medicine at the University of Florida, Gainesville. "Right after bypass surgery, there is intense inflammation of the heart," he added. "Perhaps starting statins two weeks before the surgery reduces the ... Read more

Related support groups: Heart Disease, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Angina, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Coronary Artery Disease (CAD), Pravachol, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Ischemic Heart Disease, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor, Pitavastatin, Cardiothoracic Surgery

Statins May Reduce Heart Risks Linked to Sleep Apnea: Study

Posted 6 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 6, 2016 – A new discovery about the way sleep apnea may raise the risk of heart disease also suggests that taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs might reduce that risk, according to a new study. Sleep apnea is a common disorder that involves irregular breathing while asleep, with oxygen intake dropping frequently for brief periods. The condition can triple a person's risk of stroke, high blood pressure and other heart problems, said study author Dr. Sanja Jelic, an associate professor of medicine at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City. Statins such as Crestor (rosuvastatin) and Lipitor (atorvastatin) are already taken by millions of Americans to reduce their risk of heart disease. "If the beneficial effects of statins on blood vessel health in patients with obstructive sleep apnea is confirmed in larger clinical trials, obstructive sleep apnea may ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Sleep Apnea, Obstructive Sleep Apnea/Hypopnea Syndrome, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL), Hyperlipoproteinemia

U.S. Task Force Backs Statins for Those 40 to 75 at Heightened Heart Risk

Posted 22 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2015 – Cholesterol-lowering statin drugs should be used to prevent a first heart attack or stroke in certain at-risk patients, according to a draft recommendation released Monday by the nation's leading experts in preventive medicine. The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force said statins can provide maximum preventive benefits for adults 40 to 75 years old who have an existing risk factor for heart disease and at least a 10 percent or greater risk of a heart attack or stroke sometime within the next 10 years. The independent panel added that people with a 10-year risk of heart attack and stroke between 7.5 percent and 10 percent might also benefit from statins, and should discuss the matter with their doctor. "Cardiovascular disease is a leading cause of death, and people with no signs or symptoms or past history of cardiovascular disease can still be at risk," said ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL), Hyperlipoproteinemia, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor

U.S. Task Force Stays Neutral on Cholesterol Screening for Kids

Posted 22 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Dec. 21, 2015 – There's not enough evidence to recommend screening all children and teens for high cholesterol, experts say. It's not clear if such screening up to age 20 reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force said in a draft recommendation released Monday. This is unchanged from a 2007 recommendation. "There is currently not enough research to determine whether screening all average-risk children and adolescents without symptoms leads to better cardiovascular health in adulthood," task force vice chair Dr. David Grossman said in a news release from the task force. "In addition, the potential harms of long-term use of cholesterol-lowering medication by children and adolescents are not yet understood," Grossman added. The task force is an independent, volunteer panel of national experts in prevention and evidence-based ... Read more

Related support groups: High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Red Yeast Rice, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL), Hyperlipoproteinemia, Lescol, Lescol XL, Mevacor

One in Five U.S. Kids Over Age 5 Has Unhealthy Cholesterol: CDC

Posted 10 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Dec. 10, 2015 – Twenty-one percent of American children and teens have some form of "abnormal" blood cholesterol reading that leaves them at heightened risk for heart disease and stroke as they reach adulthood. That's the conclusion of a review of 2011-2014 federal health data compiled by researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Overall, slightly more than 13 percent of kids had unhealthily low levels of HDL ("good") cholesterol – the kind that actually might help clear out arteries. The CDC says just over 8 percent had too-high levels of other forms of cholesterol that are bad for arteries, and more than 7 percent had unhealthily high levels of "total" cholesterol. Obesity helped drive these trends, the CDC said. For example, more than 43 percent of children who were obese had some form of abnormal cholesterol reading, compared to less than 14 ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Weight Loss, High Cholesterol, Lipitor, Simvastatin, Crestor, Atorvastatin, Pravastatin, Zocor, Lovastatin, Rosuvastatin, Hypertriglyceridemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Pravachol, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Livalo, Ischemic Stroke - Prophylaxis, Red Yeast Rice, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, Thromboembolic Stroke Prophylaxis

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High Cholesterol, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction, High Cholesterol - Familial Heterozygous, Hyperlipoproteinemia, High Cholesterol - Familial Homozygous, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Hyperlipoproteinemia Type III (Elevated beta-VLDL + IDL), Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IV (Elevated VLDL), Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIb (Elevated LDL + VLDL), Hyperlipoproteinemia Type IIa (Elevated LDL)

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