Statins do have the go for use in heart disease prevention as two new studies come to confirm that previous guidelines on statins use are not as controversial as some might believe.
The American College of Cardiology and The American Heart Association released a set of guidelines for statin use in 2013. These guidelines suggested that statins can be used to efficiently prevent heart disease. As such, using the drugs that primarily targeted cholesterol had the green light for heart disease prevention as well.
Yet, some argued that the 2013 set of guidelines could be conducive to overmedication and should therefore be dismissed. The two studies recently published attempt to prove this assumption is far-stretched. Both studies were conducted at Harvard University.
One study concludes that far from inciting overmedication, the 2013 set of guidelines on statins use for heart disease prevention are in fact a useful prediction tool and should be treated as such. Statin medication is suggested exclusively for people who need it.
The results of the first study indicated that in fact the new set of statins use guidelines was more effective since its adoption in preventing up to 60,000 more cases of heart disease than the previous rule book.
Currently, according to the American Heart Association, 40 million Americans use statins. According to Doctor Udo Hoffman, Professor of radiology at Harvard Medical School and the lead author of the study:
“Statins are one of the most effective medicines, and this is reassuring that the new guidelines do work”.
The second study looked specifically at the formula that pits the risk of heart disease against the use of statins for prevention of heart disease. The conclusions was that the formula had been designed with cost efficiency in mind.
The formula was run through a computer-generated model, with higher costs associated to prescribing statins for prevention of heart disease to an increased number of people. According to the researchers, the model yielded one result: that the higher cost was worth the number of lives saved by the preventive use of statins.
The American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology released statistics that say heart disease is the number one cause of death in the U.S. population. Cholesterol is tightly connected, as the buildup of the substance in the coronary arteries typically leads to the formation of blood clots.
While statins work in reducing the levels of cholesterol, they should be prescribed as a prevention treatment for heart disease.
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