Statin muscle damage missed - Rheumatology Update
Published online in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the Swiss study analysed biopsy samples from the vastus lateralis muscle of 83 patients. Overall, 44 subjects had clinically diagnosed statin-associated myopathy, and of these, 29 were currently taking a statin, while 15 had discontinued statin therapy for at least three weeks. Among the 83 patients, 19 were currently taking a statin but had no myopathy and 20 patients served as healthy controls.

Huge percentage of statins users in this small group had some myopathy.
What's the evidence for statins? | Life and style | BMJ Group
We found one study with more than 3,000 people who were in hospital because of a mild heart attack or unstable angina. Some started taking a statin and others took a dummy treatment (a placebo). After 16 weeks, those who were taking the statin were less likely to have made another emergency trip to hospital for a similar heart problem.

I believe this finding (short-term heart disease risk improvement on statin) has encouraged investigators to look for other heart healthy effects of statins. Why? Because the original model that cholesterol lowering improved heart disease is too long-term an effect to be explained by the short term results found here. The cholesterol model posits that it takes years for plaque to build up and cause heart disease. So if statins improve heart disease risk in the short-term, something else must be going on that explains the short-term improvement. Indeed, there have been studies that indicate statins reduce systemic inflammation and have anti-coagulant properties. It's those effects that explain the benefits of the statins, not the cholesterol lowering effect. If so, it brings into question the cholesterol model in general.
Statin study: Lower cholesterol, diminished joy of sex linked - USATODAY.com
The greater the drop in cholesterol from taking statin drugs, the more sexual pleasure is reduced.
More statin madness | The Blog of Michael R. Eades, M.D.
statins have been shown to reduce mortality from heart disease in those who have elevated LDL, which is true. But this decrease in deaths from heart disease is compensated for by an increase in deaths from cancer and other causes, so there really isn’t a gain. You're still dead. Just maybe not from heart disease, but what difference does it make.
Taking Cost-Effectiveness to Heart -- Burt's Stent Blog "The Voice in the Ear" -- Angioplasty.Org
The drug and medical-device industries are mobilizing to gut a provision in the stimulus bill that would spend $1.1 billion on research comparing medical treatments, portraying it as the first step to government rationing.... The administration hopes to expand coverage while limiting use of treatments that don't work well.... The House version of the stimulus package sent shudders through the drug and medical-device industry. In a staff report describing the bill, the House said treatments found to be less effective and in some cases more expensive "will no longer be prescribed."
Accepted 'normal' LDL cholesterol levels may now be too high
There are two potential implications. Either the threshold of what was set as an ideal LDL was set outrageously high, thus allowing the vast majority of patients to be missed, or LDL isn't much of a risk factor. It's got to be one of the two.ť
Pulse - The Cholesterol Controversy
Just 30 years ago, a number of leading experts thought the link between cholesterol and heart disease was a sham. This fascinating book traces the evolving and fluctuating debate.
Research finds statin medications don't prevent cancer - Related Stories - AHIP Solutions SmartBrief
A National Cancer Institute study found statins don't prevent cancer. Researchers used mice to study whether atorvastatin and lovastatin could prevent breast cancer and found, even at dosages far higher than people typically take, there was no anti-cancer effect. They also added the statin medications to anti-cancer drugs and found no added benefit.
Ask a Patient: Medicine Ratings and Health Care Opinions
American Journal of Cardiovascular Drugs - Abstract: Volume 8(6) 2008 p 373-418 Statin Adverse Effects: A Review of the Literature and Evidence for a Mitochondrial Mechanism.
HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (statins) are a widely used class of drug, and like all medications, have potential for adverse effects (AEs). Here we review the statin AE literature, first focusing on muscle AEs as the most reported problem both in the literature and by patients. Evidence regarding the statin muscle AE mechanism, dose effect, drug interactions, and genetic predisposition is examined. We hypothesize, and provide evidence, that the demonstrated mitochondrial mechanisms for muscle AEs have implications to other nonmuscle AEs in patients treated with statins. In meta-analyses of randomized controlled trials (RCTs), muscle AEs are more frequent with statins than with placebo. A number of manifestations of muscle AEs have been reported, with rhabdomyolysis the most feared. AEs are dose dependent, and risk is amplified by drug interactions that functionally increase statin potency, often through inhibition of the cytochrome P450 3A4 system. An array of additional risk factors for statin AEs are those that amplify (or reflect) mitochondrial or metabolic vulnerability, such as metabolic syndrome factors, thyroid disease, and genetic mutations linked to mitochondrial dysfunction. Converging evidence supports a mitochondrial foundation for muscle AEs associated with statins, and both theoretical and empirical considerations suggest that mitochondrial dysfunction may also underlie many nonmuscle statin AEs. Evidence from RCTs and studies of other designs indicates existence of additional statin-associated AEs, such as cognitive loss, neuropathy, pancreatic and hepatic dysfunction, and sexual dysfunction. Physician awareness of statin AEs is reportedly low even for the AEs most widely reported by patients. Awareness and vigilance for AEs should be maintained to enable informed treatment decisions, treatment modification if appropriate, improved quality of patient care, and reduced patient morbidity.
First Comprehensive Paper On Statins' Adverse Effects Released
The paper also summarizes powerful evidence that statin-induced injury to the function of the body's energy-producing cells, called mitochondria, underlies many of the adverse effects that occur to patients taking statin drugs.
Are doctors minimizing side effects of statins?
Doctors who prescribe an increasingly popular family of drugs to prevent strokes and heart attacks may be downplaying the wide range of side effects, said a UCSD researcher who helped analyze nearly 900 studies of cholesterol-lowering statins.
Statins and vitamin D | The Blog of Michael R. Eades, M.D.
[S]tatin drugs seem to increase levels of vitamin D in those who take them, which makes me wonder if any benefits that statins provide don’t come from this increase in vitamin D levels. If so, it would be a whole lot cheaper and a whole lot safer to simply take vitamin D3 supplements.

Statins increase the production of nitric oxide, an extremely short acting substance that has relaxing and anti-inflammatory effects on the lining of the arteries.

[T]he way that statins increased the production of nitric oxide mimicked the way l-arginine did the same thing. He proudly announced that his research showed for the first time how statins really worked to exert their anti-inflammatory effects. I wondered at the time why he didn’t just recommend that patients be given l-arginine - a natural substance with virtually no side effects - instead of statins?

[W]e know that the anti-inflammatory benefits provided by statins can be had cheaper and more safely by taking l-arginine....And now we know that statins increase production of vitamin D, another heart-healthy substance.

I would much prefer to take a few grams of l-arginine and 5,000 IU of vitamin D3 daily than I would to take a statin. All of the benefits and none of the risk at a fraction of the cost.
Impaired Kidney Function Linked to Mortality in Elderly - Statins benefit high-risk patients with impaired function - Modern Medicine
Impaired kidney function is associated with a higher risk of death and cardiovascular disease in elderly individuals at risk of vascular disease, while statins reduce the risk of death and heart attack in patients with impaired kidney function, according to the results of a study published online Jan. 20 in PLoS Medicine.

Conflicting results for cholesterol drug | Life and style | BMJ Group
Cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins have been used for many years to help people avoid having a heart attack or stroke. They work well to reduce the amount of a fatty substance in the blood called cholesterol. But some people find statins don't reduce cholesterol enough to cut their heart attack and stroke risk.
ksl.com - Simple statins may strengthen blood vessels
[W]hen mice programmed with a common disorder that causes leaking blood vessels were given statin drugs, something miraculous happened. "The leaking in these mice went back to normal, or possibly even better, after we had given them statins," he said.

So these little pills people take to control cholesterol also appear to strengthen blood vessels. If true, statins could become a preventive treatment for people at risk for what is called cerebral cavernous malformation. It's a condition where vessels leak, triggering sometimes fatal strokes, seizures, paralysis and a host of other problems.
Born With A Statin Deficiency? Line Forms To The Left!
How could a drug company-funded study unabashedly designed to show why the general population should use its drug (Crestor, or rosuvastatin) not just people with heart disease and high cholesterol be anything but a sales pitch?...Especially when its lead author is co-inventor on the related patent?...And its authors list 131 financial ties to drug companies? Hello?
Conventional risk assessment tools do not accurately predict coronary heart disease
Traditional risk assessment tools, like the Framingham and National Cholesterol Education Program tools, NCEP, do not accurately predict coronary heart disease, according to a study by researchers at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, CT.
Rebuild Your Vision - Naturally: Worried About Statins And Macular Degeneration?
Contrary to the expectations of some scientists, cholesterol-lowering 'statin' drugs (such as Lipitor or Zocor) do not appear to stave off age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in the eye. In fact, a review of data from the Cardiovascular Health Study suggests that taking a statin may slightly increase the risk of age-related macular degeneration.

Statin Drugs Side Effects and the Misguided War on Cholesterol
by M.D. Duane Graveline

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