Statins - side effects

User avatar
georgew
Posts: 1526
Joined: 27 Jan 2007, 4:23pm

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby georgew » 30 Dec 2016, 10:59am

mjr wrote:
georgew wrote:It is indeed a paradox when one considers that in this country cardiac problems are considered to be the result of high cholesterol and the Government encourages the prescription of Statins as a cure-all.

mjr wrote:There's no paradox because that's a gross misdescription of Government actions and surely only the gutter press considers it solely the fault of high cholesterol. As ever, the truth is not as simple to summarise as that soundbite.


"Gross description"....perhaps slightly overblown but then one reads this dated 2014:
"Until July, GPs were advised to offer statins to anyone with a one in five chance of heart disease within a decade. The new advice halves the threshold to one in 10."
When NICE is responsible for this kind of advice perhaps one can be forgiven for thing so.

georgew wrote:Some studies suggest that it is stress which may be the major contributor to cardiac problems, and that ethnic groups having low rates of cardiac problems while in their home environment, within six months will revert to the rates of cardiac disease prevalent in their new country.

Stress has been considered a risk factor for a long time - one of many, alongside elevated cholesterol. Is the effect limited to ethnic groups or do non-ethnic migrants (for example, people moving between two countries where their group is considered native) also show the same effect? And how can someone "revert" to a "new country" rate?


Stress may have been considered a risk factor but it certainly has been under-rated in comparison to the huge and massively profitable promotion of Statins. "Revert" is the wrong term certainly........increase to that of the native population...would be more accurate. Thanks for that.

User avatar
mjr
Posts: 16726
Joined: 20 Jun 2011, 7:06pm
Location: Norfolk or Somerset, mostly
Contact:

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby mjr » 30 Dec 2016, 11:19am

Have you seen how bad things have to be to have a 1 in 5 risk? Or even a 1 in 10? Even with a scary family history, low HDL and high LDL baseline, with exercise and good diet and absorption inhibitors, I don't currently qualify for statins on that basis!

Now, if you want to argue that HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors (statins) should only be tried after sequestrants and absorption inhibitors (and diet and lifestyle, of course), I'd agree there's a case, but I think absorption inhibitors are under patent still while not all statins are, so reducing statin use would actually be MORE expensive to the NHS and more profitable for at least one drug company.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

User avatar
geomannie
Posts: 660
Joined: 13 May 2009, 6:07pm

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby geomannie » 8 Jan 2017, 5:47pm

I have come late to this thread but my experience may be of interest. About 14 years ago my doctor decided to get very excited about my cholesterol levels. I can't remember what cholesterol levels were, but suffice to say they were not extraordiarily high and fell within the (then) new guidelines for treatment. As a result I was perscribed Lipitor (atorvastatin). I should add that I was 100% healthy with no family history of heart disease, a runner and cyclist.

After a few months my blood cholesterol levels fell to "aceptable" levels but I started to feel tired and run-down, getting constant colds. It seemed as if my immune system was down and causing my difficulty in exercising. As you might imagine I did wonder if the Lipitor was the base cause but I had no evidence. After about 6 months I developed ringworm (a fungal infection) in my groin, something I had never had before of since. Ringworm is common in people with impaired immune systems.

I went back to my doctor's practice and after disscussion with another GP decided that my cardiovascular risks were actually not that high and I stopped the drug. Within weeks my energy returned and the ringworm cleared up.

Following finding this thread I did a Google search and have found a randomised trial (*) that shows statins are indeed associated with fatigue in many people. It goes some way to confirming my suspicions that Lipitor was not good for me as it was preventing me from exercising. I make no comment on whether it is the right drug for other people.

*http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/1183454
geomannie

User avatar
georgew
Posts: 1526
Joined: 27 Jan 2007, 4:23pm

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby georgew » 9 Jan 2017, 11:23am

geomannie wrote:I have come late to this thread but my experience may be of interest. About 14 years ago my doctor decided to get very excited about my cholesterol levels. I can't remember what cholesterol levels were, but suffice to say they were not extraordiarily high and fell within the (then) new guidelines for treatment. As a result I was perscribed Lipitor (atorvastatin). I should add that I was 100% healthy with no family history of heart disease, a runner and cyclist.

After a few months my blood cholesterol levels fell to "aceptable" levels but I started to feel tired and run-down, getting constant colds. It seemed as if my immune system was down and causing my difficulty in exercising. As you might imagine I did wonder if the Lipitor was the base cause but I had no evidence. After about 6 months I developed ringworm (a fungal infection) in my groin, something I had never had before of since. Ringworm is common in people with impaired immune systems.

I went back to my doctor's practice and after disscussion with another GP decided that my cardiovascular risks were actually not that high and I stopped the drug. Within weeks my energy returned and the ringworm cleared up.

Following finding this thread I did a Google search and have found a randomised trial (*) that shows statins are indeed associated with fatigue in many people. It goes some way to confirming my suspicions that Lipitor was not good for me as it was preventing me from exercising. I make no comment on whether it is the right drug for other people.

*http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/1183454



The above has made me think. I've been taking Statins for years now as a deterrent against another heart attack having already had two. I seemed to have suffered all the possible side-effects including fatigue, joint pain, constipation and a general lack of energy and have often felt that my quality of life is now unacceptable. I'm not long back from my GP as I too have been found to have a fungal infection in my groin area....something I've never experienced before in seventy-seven years. I'm now considering discontinuing Statins as I have to review the risk/benefits of continuing to take this drug.

nez
Posts: 1864
Joined: 19 Jun 2008, 12:11am

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby nez » 9 Jan 2017, 11:41am

A few years ago my now dead uncle's GP tried to get him to take them, reasoning he was in a high risk group as a diabetic. 'I'm 86' said the uncle, politely refusing.

ianrobo
Posts: 512
Joined: 12 Jan 2017, 9:52pm

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby ianrobo » 12 Jan 2017, 11:45pm

Statins are the biggest con out and very profitable for drug companies. The side effects are large ad the benefit is reckoned to be 1 in 100,000 person.

If a doctor prescribes that I would say research and then say no, not needed, cholorsteol is NOT the problem, inflammation is.

Davidwd
Posts: 76
Joined: 1 Aug 2015, 7:42am

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby Davidwd » 19 Jan 2017, 6:21pm

I have had bad side effects with many statins, now I am on Pravastatin and the side effects are much less.

User avatar
mjr
Posts: 16726
Joined: 20 Jun 2011, 7:06pm
Location: Norfolk or Somerset, mostly
Contact:

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby mjr » 19 Jan 2017, 7:02pm

Davidwd wrote:I have had bad side effects with many statins, now I am on Pravastatin and the side effects are much less.

Sadly(?), the intended effects are also much less.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

irc
Posts: 4831
Joined: 3 Dec 2008, 2:22pm
Location: glasgow

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby irc » 19 Jan 2017, 7:53pm

ianrobo wrote:Statins are the biggest con out and very profitable for drug companies. The side effects are large ad the benefit is reckoned to be 1 in 100,000 person.

If a doctor prescribes that I would say research and then say no, not needed, cholorsteol is NOT the problem, inflammation is.


As it happens I was talking to a GP this week who said exactly the same thing. He suggests Omega 3 from fish oil rather than statins. He reckons the effect of statins on stroke/heart disease are from their anti-inflammatory properties. Omega 3 also has anti-inflammatory effects. So his theory is that you get the same (roughly) benefit from omega3 without the side effects from statins. He showed me a study which reported 10% of statins users got side effects but he reckoned that was under reporting.

He told of one patient (not his surgerys patient) he spoke to who had multiple health issues including muscular issues meaning he could only walk with a stick and was looking likely to end up in a wheelchair. He had been on statins for some time. The muscular issues had started around the time the statins had. He reckoned the muscular issues might be statins side effects. After consulting with the patient's GP and suggesting his statins side effect theory it was agreed he could advise the patient to come off the statins but continue on all other meds. The hardest thing was getting the patient to agree. He had been convinced that statins were saving his life. 1 year later the patient is still off of statins and has vastly better mobility.


From memory another study he quoted was that around 60 patients would need to take statins for 5 years to prevent one heart attack or stroke. That is a lot of people getting side effects for no benefit.

Me? There is no history of stroke or heart disease in our family for anyone under 75 or 80yrs of age. I'd just say no to statins. My dad is healthy and active at 88 while on no medication at all.

Were I at risk through lifestyle or family history I'd consider taking them but ber aware of side effects. IMO the beneficial effect is small enough that it is outweighed by the side effects - if you get them. If you are at risk and can take statins without side effects then Ok - go for it.

ianrobo
Posts: 512
Joined: 12 Jan 2017, 9:52pm

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby ianrobo » 19 Jan 2017, 9:15pm

irc wrote:
ianrobo wrote:Statins are the biggest con out and very profitable for drug companies. The side effects are large ad the benefit is reckoned to be 1 in 100,000 person.

If a doctor prescribes that I would say research and then say no, not needed, cholorsteol is NOT the problem, inflammation is.


Were I at risk through lifestyle or family history I'd consider taking them but ber aware of side effects. IMO the beneficial effect is small enough that it is outweighed by the side effects - if you get them. If you are at risk and can take statins without side effects then Ok - go for it.


So you would have all those side effects, well researched and proven to take a drug with such a small beneficial effect.

YEs omega 3 oils are key but also cut out all the omega 6 crap and esp variants of vegetables oils.

User avatar
531colin
Posts: 13413
Joined: 4 Dec 2009, 6:56pm
Location: North Yorkshire

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby 531colin » 19 Jan 2017, 9:43pm

Athrosclerotic plaques have 2 pathological effects....
1) if they are big enough, they can occlude the artery enough to restrict blood flow
2) they send off blood clots into the end organ, which causes stroke or heart attack, depending on which end organ.

Plaques which are inflamed give rise to many more clots than un-inflamed plaques.
Statins are shown to reduce inflammation in plaques.
If you know any studies showing reduction in inflammation in plaques with omega 3 oils, lets have them?

irc
Posts: 4831
Joined: 3 Dec 2008, 2:22pm
Location: glasgow

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby irc » 19 Jan 2017, 10:49pm

531colin wrote:Athrosclerotic plaques have 2 pathological effects....
1) if they are big enough, they can occlude the artery enough to restrict blood flow
2) they send off blood clots into the end organ, which causes stroke or heart attack, depending on which end organ.

Plaques which are inflamed give rise to many more clots than un-inflamed plaques.
Statins are shown to reduce inflammation in plaques.
If you know any studies showing reduction in inflammation in plaques with omega 3 oils, lets have them?


I was reporting what a GP said.

However first result on google is

thttp://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/2732647.stm

The patients were divided into three groups and were asked to take either omega-3 fish-oil capsules, sunflower-oil capsules or a dummy capsule six times a day. On average, they took the capsules for 42 days.

After the patients underwent surgery, doctors examined their plaques.

They found that there were far fewer inflammatory cells in the plaques of patients who had taken the omega-3 fish oil capsules.

This meant that they were less likely to rupture and to trigger a heart attack or stroke.



Another google result

Inflammation Modulation

Fish oil’s most potent effect on atherosclerosis may be related to its potential to alter plaque inflammation, thereby stabilizing vulnerable plaques.


https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3217043/

User avatar
531colin
Posts: 13413
Joined: 4 Dec 2009, 6:56pm
Location: North Yorkshire

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby 531colin » 20 Jan 2017, 8:10am

I don't know how I missed all that.....thank you!

irc
Posts: 4831
Joined: 3 Dec 2008, 2:22pm
Location: glasgow

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby irc » 20 Jan 2017, 11:44am

531colin wrote:I don't know how I missed all that.....thank you!



No problem. For what it;s worth the GP concerned seems to take a particular interest in the subject. It isn't just another one of many issues a GP deals with. He is convinced enough that him and his wife take 6 capsules each per day. Though I'm not aware of any research as to what the best therapeutic. I'm in the little and often school. I take one capsule per day on top of eating a bit of fish now and then.

Like other things there was wisdom in the old wife's tales. I'm old enough to have had a granny that gave a daily spoonfull of cod liver oil.

ianrobo
Posts: 512
Joined: 12 Jan 2017, 9:52pm

Re: Statins - side effects

Postby ianrobo » 20 Jan 2017, 12:39pm

irc wrote:
531colin wrote:I don't know how I missed all that.....thank you!



No problem. For what it;s worth the GP concerned seems to take a particular interest in the subject. It isn't just another one of many issues a GP deals with. He is convinced enough that him and his wife take 6 capsules each per day. Though I'm not aware of any research as to what the best therapeutic. I'm in the little and often school. I take one capsule per day on top of eating a bit of fish now and then.

Like other things there was wisdom in the old wife's tales. I'm old enough to have had a granny that gave a daily spoonfull of cod liver oil.


which is why the real food and paleo movements are growing quick ....