Print This Page

Statin Strikeouts: A Pause in the Statin Onslaught?

  • Currently 4.6/5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Not Helpful ..... Very Helpful
Was this information helpful? Average rating: 4.6/5 (154 votes)
What do you think? Click the stars to vote!
If you have more to say, post a comment below!

Statin enthusiasts have half jokingly suggested that statins are such marvelous medications that they should be introduced into the water supply, almost like fluoride. Their argument goes that if everyone got a daily dose of statins, they could dramatically reduce the risk of heart disease, and almost everything else for that matter.

Two studies just published in the New England Journal of Medicine (and an editorial titled "Statin Strikeout") suggest that the statin juggernaut might be losing a little steam. This research was funded by taxpayer money and attempted to determine the value of statins for people with really severe breathing problems.

In one study, nearly 900 patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) were recruited to receive either simvastatin (Zocor) or placebo. They were followed for roughly 641 days. The hypothesis was that patients taking simvastatin would have fewer flare-ups ("exacerbations" or serious breathing problems), hospitalizations or deaths compared to those on placebo.

The results were disappointing. Simvastatin (40 mg daily) did not improve lung function, did not enhance quality of life, did not reduce exacerbations and did not diminish deaths. The researchers pointed out that their results contradicted previous "observational" studies that demonstrated tremendous lung benefits from statins, thereby suggesting that such epidemiological research is often unreliable. This randomized controlled trial (RCT) put the brakes on the enthusiasts who were ready to start prescribing statins to patients with COPD.

The other study was equally disillusioning. Severely ill patients diagnosed with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) were the subjects in this trial. These are patients with a life-threatening lung condition sometimes called "shock lung." It is life threatening and can be triggered by a respiratory infection such as pneumonia. People with ARDS have trouble breathing because of terrible lung inflammation and frequently have an accompanying systemic infection. Organ system failure often follows the profound inflammatory response called sepsis. Because statins have an anti-inflammatory effect, the researchers hoped rosuvastatin (Crestor) would "improve clinical outcomes."

Au contraire. Here are the conclusions:

"Rosuvastatin therapy did not improve clinical outcomes in patients with sepsis-associated ARDS and may have contributed to hepatic and renal organ dysfunction."

In other words the rosuvastatin did not reduce mortality from ARDS or improve other outcomes such as fewer days on a ventilator or improved lung function. There was also some suggestion that this statin had a negative impact on both kidney and liver function, not a good outcome for patients in a life-threatening situation already.

 

Other Statin Strikeouts: Alzheimer's Disease

This is not the first time that epidemiological studies had suggested statin benefits for health conditions other than heart disease. There has been a drumroll of enthusiasm for using statins to prevent or treat Alzheimer's disease and dementia. Again, the theory was that the anti-inflammatory effect of statins would be beneficial for the brain. A number of observational studies suggested that older people taking statins might be less likely to develop dementia.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23225700

Needless to say, this sort of finding created a lot of excitement within the statin-enthusiasts community. But epidemiological research doesn't hold a candle to the gold-standard type of research in which one group of patients gets placebo and the other gets active drug (RCTs or randomized controlled trials). One such trial was conducted with atorvastatin (Lipitor). In this study 640 older people with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease were randomized to receive either 80 mg of atorvastatin daily or placebo. The statin did not slow cognitive decline.

Despite this negative finding, there is growing interest in prescribing statins to prevent Alzheimer's disease. That is why the analysis by the independent experts at the Cochrane Collaboration is so important:

"There is good evidence from RCTs that statins given in late life to individuals at risk of vascular disease have no effect in preventing AD [Alzheimer's disease] or dementia. Biologically it seems feasible that statins could prevent dementia due to their role in cholesterol reduction and initial evidence from observational studies was very promising. Indication bias may have been a factor in these studies however and the evidence from subsequent RCTs has been negative."

And this from the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews regarding treatment of cognitive decline:

"There is insufficient evidence to recommend statins for the treatment of dementia."

The Statin Wars Continue

Just as there is polarization in politics these days, there is growing polarization within medicine when it comes to the benefits and risks of statins. The enthusiasts are quick to point out that statins have been shown to reduce the risk of recurrent heart attacks. That is to say, once a person has diagnosed heart disease, has a stent inserted in a coronary artery or has experienced a cardiac event, statins can reduce the risk of another event or death. This is called secondary prevention. There is little controversy about this.

What is far more contentious is whether statins do anything positive for people who are otherwise healthy. Some researchers are adamant that statins work to prevent cardiac events in so-called primary prevention. Others say not so fast. The number crunchers at TheNNT.com have analyzed the available data from randomized controlled trials. Their conclusions regarding people without known heart disease:

Taking a statin for 5 years:

1) did not prevent death

2) prevented a heart attack in 1.6% of subjects

3) prevented a stroke in 0.4% of subjects

4) provided no benefit in 98% of subjects

 

Statin Side Effects

Some physicians are relying on randomized controlled trials to demonstrate that statin side effects are insignificant and do not exceed side effects from placebos. A recent meta-analysis (The European Journal of Preventive Cardiology (March, 2014) concluded:

"At the doses tested in these 83,880 patients, only a small minority of symptoms reported on statins are genuinely due to the statins: almost all reported symptoms occurred just as frequently when patients were administered placebo. New-onset diabetes mellitus was the only potentially or actually symptomatic side effect whose rate was significantly higher on statins than placebo; nevertheless, only 1 in 5 of these new cases were actually caused by statins."

In other words, except for a touch of diabetes, statins do not cause muscle pain, weakness, peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage), or any of the other side effects that have been widely reported on this website and even in the medical literature. One reason that the randomized controlled trials may not have identified side effects such as muscle pain is a lack of a shared definition. A recent report in the American Heart Journal (April 10, 2014) notes that in the real world of clinical practice, muscle problems are reported by 10-25% of people taking statins.

BOTTOM LINE:

The take home message from the New England Journal of Medicine articles is that both observational studies and randomized controlled trails have weaknesses. Epidemiology doesn't do a good job of identifying how effective a treatment may be, which is why the researchers were a bit nonplussed when their expensive trials of statins for severe respiratory problems struck out. RCTs are not always well designed to detect side effects.

Tell your statin story below. Anecdotes are the least accurate scientific evidence, but they are not meaningless. If you have great success with statins, share your experience. If you have had trouble with side effects, please let us know too.

 

 

  • Currently 4.6/5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Not Helpful ..... Very Helpful
Was this information helpful? Average rating: 4.6/5 (154 votes)
What do you think? Click the stars to vote!
If you have more to say, post a comment below!

51 Comments

| Leave a comment

I was on Crestor for 5 months following a stent procedure. I woke up one morning totally exhausted and unable to lift my sprinkling can with both hands to water my flowers. The muscle pain in my right upper arm was terrible. I was also experiencing memory problems.

I called my cardiologist and he didn't think statins were the cause. He was also upset that I stopped taking them without his consent. We tried 5 other statins. The pain and exhaustion was not worth the life I was living.

I am now off all statins and back to my old self. It took a year to get back. I realize statins are wonderful if you can tolerate them. I could not. I was a very active person before statins, gardening, golfing, exercising. I had to stop everything while on statins. I am happy to report I am now enjoying life once again.

I went to a cardiologist upon the advice of my primary care doctor. The reason being that MY MOTHER died from a stroke.
I went on the statin for a couple of months, but never felt comfortable taking it.

Then I went back to the same CARDIOLOGIST'S office but went to see another doctor in the same office and he asked me "Why are you on a statin?" "Did you ever have a heart attack?" "I see you watch your diet, you exercise and do all the right things for your health, so you don't need a statin"( in his professional opinion )

I'M OFF STATINS

As I have commented before, statins have caused problems for me. Since beginning Lipitor about 10 years ago, I developed restless leg syndrome, peripheral neuropathy in my feet, muscle cramps in my feet and legs, a general muscle weakness. My alkaline phosphatase levels have been elevated. The doctors can find no reason for the cause. I don't want to continue this medication, but the doctor says she doesn't think it is the cause of my problems. Someone please tell me what to do!

I was given a prescription for Crestor 20 mg. after my triple by-pass in 2011. I began to have severe muscle spasms and general weakness, confusion, and lethargy. I felt so bad, I finally stopped it altogether and my Dr. tried several different statins in different strengths.

I complained over and over to both my family Dr. and the heart Dr. to no avail. Both insisted that I take the statins, even though I felt terrible. I suffer from fibromyalgia and the statins seem to exacerbate the condition. My feet were so sore on the bottoms, walking was very painful.

Finally the heart Dr. suggested I take 5 mg. and if that was too much to cut the pill in two and take 1/2 as many days as I could tolerate it. I began to feel somewhat better on this dose. I now take 1/2 of a 5 mg. tablet of Crestor about every other day. Since beginning the statins, I have elevated sugar in my blood.

I complained to my Dr. about this and asked him to change to a statin that wouldn't cause my blood sugar to go up. He said, "they all do that, and if you get diabetes, we can do something about that". I hit the roof and told him I never had a problem before the statins and I would watch my intake of carbs very closely until my next check up. If my blood sugar is elevated, I would stop taking statins.

I also developed arthritis in my hands which are becoming deformed with the swollen knuckles and joints and they ache terribly. My total cholesterol was 201 my last check up. The LDL is still too high. The heart Dr. was going to put me on an additional statin to bring it down and I refused. Will have my next check up in July.

What a joke. Everyone doesn't need a statin and don't forget the side effects. Statins are needed because we don't eat right and our food supplies have been polluted by the growers and the producers. If we ate right and lived right we wouldn't need them at all. I quit them altogether and decided I'll let nature takes it course. Instead of being my own worse enemy, I'm going to try and be my BEST friend and watch my diet and how I live.

Drug studies are usually not long enough to fairly evaluate for potential risks. With Statins, ALS, Mitochondrial Encephalomyopathy, Diabetes, Cataracts etc etc etc can take much longer than 641 days for the symptoms to manifest themselves.

I was on Lipitor for 3.5 years when my brain began to deteriorate and have outward signs of the brain cell death (Apoptosis) I was having, and the Mitochondrial DNA mutations I had encountered. All for a measly less than 0.5% chance of avoiding a heart attack.

I had a stroke 10 years ago and Lipitor was prescribed. I have taken Simvastatin 80 mg. pills for 8years. I had a second stroke 2 months ago. I now shuffle my feet, have difficulty with balance and can't write my name.


I am a retired registered nurse. About 10 years ago, my doctor put me on Lipitor for elevated cholesterol. I took it for a year, did not like how I felt on it, so I stopped taking it. However, it left me with neuropathy of my feet!! and I suffer from this even now.

Looking back, I wish I had never taken lipitor!! My Mother used bacon grease to season veggies, fried a lot of the foods she cooked, and never used a statin. She lived to be 90 years old with few health problems.

I am now 90, also with few health problems, except for the neuropathy of my feet. I advise people around me to never take Lipitor. I feel it is one of the most over rated, dangerous drug on the market.

I feel that the pharmaceutical companies who produce these statin drugs are rubbing their hands with glee, seeing all of the money they are making on these drugs. I feel that doctors need to wake up and listen to their patients complaints about these drugs. And lastly, I feel that no one is going to pay any attention to what I have written above!!

I think some of the medical profession along with the greedy pharmaceutical industry have lost their mind!
What next will they want to put in our water????

Reading this makes me very angry with our government!!

One year ago I took myself off my physician prescribed daily dosage of 40mg Simvastatin due to weakness and pain in my legs. On my last visit to my physician, she urged me to resume the drug for several weeks to determine if my leg pain resumed or intensified. This I did and sure enough the pain returned. . . I have now trash canned the drug.
Originally, I had read a study from Cambridge Univ in England detailing the negative effect statins have on kidney function. Somehow, after hours of searching, I cannot locate this study on the www.

With high cholesterol numbers (over 250) I was given statins and EVERY ONE of them made my legs feel as if I was going to fall down, they were numb. I even tried the one that was taken off then market, Bacal, that's how long ago I tried statins. I am now 82 years old, play golf, do aqua size three times a week, walk and am living a health life, on no statins. Hopefully until I am 100 years old!!!

I have been taking Lipitor, or it's generic for 15+ years. I'm 71 years old, and I exercise 3-4 times a week, and have NEVER experienced and muscle pain or weakness, or any nerve damage associated therefrom.

Had severe muscle weakness on Lipitor.

I'm one of those claiming side effects from simvastatin. I had severe muscle problems the full length of my back, some of which cleared up with a change, some did not.

A recent switch to Lipitor has made them return, even tho I'm at half the dose I took of simvastatin.

I am currently trying cutting it in half and taking half (10 mg) in the morning and the second half in the evening. If this fails, I'd rather gamble on a heart attack or stoke!!!! My quality of life has suffered TOO MUCH. It is NOT worth this pain.

I took Crestor for a few years, then switched to Pravastatin because it was cheaper. After a couple of years I began to have trouble concentrating. When I told my doc, he said he had suffered the same problem. He had stopped statins, and he took me off all statins. My mind cleared up, plus my cholesterol stayed normal. I would not dream of taking statins again!

I find the idea of statins preventing dementia amazing--or perhaps I should say, amusing. It flies in the face of neurologist Dr David Perlmutter's recent book GRAIN BRAIN, the bottom line of which regarding cholesterol was clearly that our brains need MORE cholesterol rather than less.

1. Doctors agree high cholesterol bad for you.

2. My cholesterol was WAY out of bounds.

3. Started taking Lovastatin.

4. My cholesterol was reduced greatly back to normal range.

5. Simple as that. What's the problem?

Five years on Simvastatin have left me with Vascular Parkinsonism, type 2 diabetes and peripheral neuropathy. Do these idiot poison-pushers really want to put their statin poison into the water supply?

People's Pharmacy response: No, not really. It is an exaggerated form of speaking.

I took statins 20mg(Lipitor) for 15 years or so. For the last four years I have been in and out of Physical Therapy for muscle tightness and pain. It helped a little, but the muscle pain would always get worse quickly.

This past fall I started having peripheral neuropathy in my feet, fell a few times, and was generally miserable and unable to walk like I have in the past. Unable to lift over 15# without low back pain.

My primary Dr. decided to do an MRI as they were concerned it could be stenosis. My spine is in great shape, the problems is neuro-muscular. So I cut the statin dose in half for 30 days with not much change and then came off it entirely.

MIRACLES! Most of the pain soon went away! Because I have a high cholesterol problem they then tried pravastatin, within two weeks the pain and neuropathy pain was back, so stopped that and pain went away. Have tried Red Yeast Rice with the same results.

I am currently taking nothing and watching what I eat and walking 2-3 miles everyday. My PT has told me that they are experiencing a large number of people with muscle pain that they can't help, and turns out that they are taking Statins. Once they come off the pain goes away. Thanks for your reporting on this. Wish I would have known about this years ago, saved a lot of pain and $$$. I'm 70 years old and finally feeling like I can start living again.

It's funny that they didn't find muscle pain or memory loss when millions of people report these but yet they can tell us statins help prevent heart disease. Regarding "a touch of diabetes".... what is that? Maybe if they put statins in our water we can all eventually have it (diabetes) and then all of the pharmaceutical companies can cash in on the millions they make from selling us insulin.

BUT!!! Where are the reputable, double blind test result on 80,000 people to see whether or not males AND (separately) females taking a statin type or placebo had SIGNIFICANTLY less incidence or heart attack, stroke with but not without a statin regimen?????

I certainly agree that my total cholesterol was significantly reduced by taking 40 mg daily of Zocor generic (a few years ago). However, my total cholesterol is now reduced more by 20 mg of Zocor generic plus 2 daily doses of 500 mg of OTC Niacin. Additionally, my HDL (good cholesterol) is raised from barely 40 to 55. [DISCLAIMER] this finding may not work for anyone else.

The downside for overseas pharma is I can buy 120 capsules bottles of OTC Niacin at Walmart. However, since insurance doesn't cover OTC, horrors, it costs ME more than overdosing my body with 40 mg a day of statin.

After taking statins for many years (Lipitor), I cracked the L1 vertabrae lifting a chair about two years ago.. The following investigation found a mild case of osteoporosis. The technician conducting the test told me about a recent study that found unexpected high levels of osteoporosis in relatively young men taking statins.

It was unexpected because this condition had only been studied in women, usually limited to postmenapausal women. I sopped the statins and subsequently have been reversing the bone loss.

I have the genetic kind of elevated cholesterol & have no other risk factors, I am 66, and my levels are not that bad. I have tried EVERY statin out there and have been unable to tolerate any of them. I will just have to go to my grave with this elevation!! No more trials for me.


I am taking my 3rd different statin drug. All 3 have been very effective in lowering my cholesterol numbers. My doctor took me off Pravachol because my CPK test became elevated.

The next statin Lescol gave me digestive issues. Within 3 months of first taking the drug I developed GI problems: First severe early morning heart burn then early morning vomiting. Both issues quickly disappeared when the drug was stopped.

I been taking 20mg of Simvastatin daily for 5 years. My numbers are quite good: total Cholesterol 160 and LDL 60. Before taking statins those numbers were 225 and 130 However I am questioning my need for the drug. I am a very active 79 year old male, 6 ft tall and weighing in at 160. I have no cardio history. Both my father and his parents lived well into their 90s.

After being diagnosed with cardiovascular disease my cardiologist put me on 20mg of prevastatin once a day (and 20mg of a beta blocker as well). I have experienced zero side affects and my cholesterol has gone down from a relatively healthy 190 or so to 160 with the HDL ratio remaining about one to three, HDL to Total. My brother, on the other hand, had severe pain and weakness in both arms when he took statins...go figure....

Took non-generic Pravachol for 5 years low dose. Not too many problems.

Insurance forced me to take generic pravastatin which exacerbated my myasthenia gravis causing muscle fatigue.

My only risk factor is hyperlipidemia. So I stopped taking the statin all together-against my doctors advice.

Was put on Simvastatin by my physician... the only results were severe leg and hip pain... Never Again !

I started with Simvastatin and complained to my doctor about leg weakness. He then switched me to Pravastatin, and still the leg pains persisted. Again, I complained to the doctor and he put me on Crestor. I took it for about 5 months, but my leg weakness got so bad my husband had to help me climb some steps while on vacation. I have since stopped taking any statins and my leg weakness has stopped. I also feel it may have been the cause of a diagnosis of DM.

@Carole YOU AND ONLY YOU are in charge of your own body...think of your doctor as a plumber, if you dont like his work, find a different doctor who listens and respects your opinion. Never has a statin study proven ANY benefit for a woman...ask your doctor about that. http://chriskresser.com/the-truth-about-statin-drugs

My "bad" cholesterol was high my last blood work. I recently was prescribed Lipitor. However, having read about their side effects and listened to others, I have made the decision not to take statins, period. My Physician's Assistant suggested I begin taking Red Yeast Rice, so I have been taking 1200 mg 2x a day. Has anyone else tried this? Results?

What you have experienced I have too. I went off Statins I feel great.
After reading much on the literature, discussing how I felt with my doctor it was the best decision for me. I really have changed my diet, picked the right supplements etc. I have also included a doctor MD I now see that is into integrative health.

Your high cholesterol was probably from your life style. That being the case you would need a pill. Take a look at all the others comments and then do some research and see the BAD in statin pills that DO exist.

First of all, we usually cause our own problems. Make sure you eat right and exercise. And don't forget 200 is NOT a bad number. Even a little over that is OK. But, I'm quite sure you will be able to control it by changing your life style and get off the statins. They do more damage than good.

MJ..Your Physician asst is correct...Red yeast rice will lower your cholesterol. Just know, red yeast rice works the exact same way statins do, by blocking the enzyme HMG CoA Reductase which is the precursor to a nearly 200 step pathway in which many many other vital substances are made, such as Vit D, Cholesterol, Dolichols, CoQ10, Steroid Hormones, Testosterone, Estrogen, etc. etc etc...all of which we manufacture, making these absolutely necessary. Being that Red Yeast Rice works the same way as statins, they have the potential carry the same risks. Be careful....Remember, lower cholesterol does NOT equal lower risk of heart attack. Read info above: Taking a statin for 5 years:
1) did not prevent death
2) prevented a heart attack in 1.6% of subjects
3) prevented a stroke in 0.4% of subjects
4) provided no benefit in 98% of subjects

My Lipitor experience, being on Lipitor for 3.5 years, I suffered Neuronal Apoptosis (Brain Cell Death), Mitochondrial Mutations similar to Mitochondrial Encephalomyopathy with Lactic Acid Acidosis and Stroke-Like Episodes (MELAS), I developed Peripheral Neuropathy at the same time, as a result of the brain injury, have been disabled since oct 2002 due to severe cognitive impairment. Dr Beatrice Golomb of the UCSD statin effects study, informed me that per her study, Lipitor was the likely causal contributor to the MELAS findings. These Drugs are POISON!! I ended up firing my one neurologist and my Internist, both of whom vehemently denied any notion that the wonder drug Lipitor could do such a thing, and my internist kept pushing statins in spite of his speaking with dr Golomb...so he needed to go.

I found a new primary care doc, who after reviewing my 28 day hospital records, told me after seeing what Lipitor did to me,that she will never ask me to take a statin, I told her, as long as we share the same feeling, she will be my doctor for a long time. We can no longer blindly accept what our doctors think as gold, but we have to discern for ourselves...man has been on this planet for a LONG time, and heart disease was essentially a non issue, until we started to eat garbage. Then we were told Cholesterol was the devil, and statins were born, with little to no effect of Mortality. But a huge jump in Congestive Heart Failure (Heart is hardest working muscle in the body, and needs an abundant supply of CoQ10, but statins BLOCK coQ10, therefore a spike in CHF.

I tolerated Lipitor pretty well for 7-8 years except for constipation and being diagnosed with "polymyalgia rhumatica" which I think was caused by the Lipitor. Then the insurance company ordered generic. Over a period of years the doctor has prescribed three different generics, one after the other.

I experienced the usual muscle and joint pain and spasms that others complain about. At one point I could hardly walk. Couldn't play golf. I quit each generic and felt better within 1-3 months only to have problems recur with the next generic. Quit for the last time about six months ago and am doing fine. A friend who's a retired M.D. also quit statins after similar miseries.

I'm highly suspicious of the Indian company which manufactures generic statins. They've been criticized for quality control problems and have also been caught in financial irregularities. The FDA is clueless.

Should I try to get my doctor to try to get Lipitor for me again? Nah.

Why do doctors insist on keeping patients on medications when a patient complains of side-effects? Do they think we are just complainers? I had to stop the generic Lipitor due to muscle pain despite my doctors objections.

Now I am trying to get off of Atenolol for high BP and doctor refuses to change to something else. It has caused advanced arthritis in my feet + nerve pain in my lower right leg. Vascular MD says I have PAD but still primary care doctor sees no relationship with Atenolol. Problem with Betas is they cannot just be stopped. I am told it's all a trade-off.

reply to wb: Thank goodness someone isn't having problems with statins. I have been taking Lipitor for almost a year and don't seem to be having any problems. I am 82. Yes, sometimes I have pain in my hands and legs---that comes with age as far as I'm concerned. I am also a COPD patient and on oxygen 24/7. I can sit and watch TV all day and complain about my aches and pains or I can get up and go. I go! Hook my oxygen on my stroller and take off. I use the stroller so I can have my hands free to shop, eat or whatever. This sure beats sitting around worrying about having a stroke or heart attack.

My husband had a heart attack in 2002 and had a stent put in. He was given simvistatin. I noticed a change in his cognitive function immediately. He loved to cook but suddenly developed problems following recipes or buying items he needed for large meals. My husband was always the main cook for large family dinners such as Thanksgiving and Christmas, but he would forget how to properly time the main course and side dishes.

I kept after him to talk to his doctor and eventually they lowered his dose, but still he was lethargic and suffered memory lapses. He also developed diabetes. His doctor finally agreed that maybe he should take a hiatus from the statins. He has been off the statins for 3 weeks and is much, much better cognitively. We'll see what his blood work reveals at his next check-up.

I started with Lipitor and suffered horrible aching in my knees, toes, and fingers, along with muscle pain and weakness in my arms and legs. At first, my doctor blamed it on my OA and spinal stenosis, but I knew it was the Lipitor and, sure enough, when I stopped it, all the additional pain and aches disappeared.

My doctor was still concerned about my (moderately) high cholesterol and triglycerides, so put me on Simvastatin (sp?) and the aches and pains returned, though less intensely than with the Lipitor. Once again, when I discontinued the drug, the aches and pains went away.

At that point, I told my doctor that I was "done" with the statins. I had started working to lower my cholesterol with dietary changes, and told her I would continue doing so. I've lowered my cholesterol from 246 to 209 - still struggling with my triglycerides, but working on that as well. But, for me, the pain and overall malaise caused by the statins were unbearable and I will never agree to take them again.

My doctor told me that my thoracic aneurysm was caused by cholesterol??? I am 72 and will not have surgery as I feel the results could be catastrophic..

I would really like to hear from a few more people who aren't having any problems caused by statins. I was starting to think something was wrong with me because I didn't have any side effects.

RAW requested that people who didn't have trouble caused by statins write in. I have written in several times about my 20 mg of zocor + 1000 mg of niacin and not having pains. But, it occurs to me that many people who don't have problems with statins wouldn't want to spend time reading these reports from the people who do. (This isn't a blind study or anything like that.)

I don't know why RAW and I are reading them - I think I am just curious. I've been taking zocor 40 mg since 1994 and only in 2012 reduced to 20 mg + the Niacin (with my Dr's permission/suggestion). I had a mild TIA stroke in 2002 and didn't dare quit zocor - I increased my Dog walk to 40 minutes a day and I lost from 210 lbs to 175 lbs rather quickly. For the last 6 or so years, my dog and I only walk 20 or so min. a day but it's every day unless there is a continuous heavy rain all day long -don't remember when that was.

Hello, there was a newspaper maybe 2 years ago from the Peoples Pharmacy, someone had taken the Red Yeast Rice and it dropped their cholesterol 100 points. I think that is all they did, did not change diet dramatically. good luck!!!

Three years back I took Lipitor for three weeks and some new medicine six tablets three times a day it was Walchole I do not remember the spellings. For two weeks my biceps tendons from shoulder to elbow we're ruptured with long tears. It was so horrible. When the therapist read the report she said you were in accident, I said no. Even for the last three years my insurance is telling me that I was involved in accident. Did I get any compensation? I cannot take any medicine. Till today I am suffering pain like bursitis and tendinitis. I cannot take any medicine for sugar or even a pain killer. May be I never took any medicine our mom always gave us home remedies and homeopathy.

I only take cinnamon and life style to control my sugar. I request if anybody can give some information about home remedy or herbal or anything for cholesterol also, I spent lot of money and went to foreign country for special extensive therapy. That gave me relief to the extent I could have some normal life.

Bs The header of this article notes the following: Taking a statin for 5 years:
1) did not prevent death
2) prevented a heart attack in 1.6% of subjects
3) prevented a stroke in 0.4% of subjects
4) provided no benefit in 98% of subjects
What isn't entirely clear is the number of people whose lives are devastated as a result of taking a statin or by artificially lowering their cholesterol. Watch this video from some of the WORLDS highest qualified experts on Statins and Cholesterol: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzaHWNjEBO8#t=60

We as a society have been browbeaten to believe that Cholesterol causes heart disease...we have had it drilled into our skulls so much, we actually believe a molecule, which is so absolutely crucial to hundreds of metabolic processes, including the production of CoQ10, Vit D, Dolichols, Testosterone, Steroid Hormones etc... I even as an RN, believed this, when I knew the basic physiology, which shows Cholesterol as an essential nutrient. Lowering your Cholesterol is as preposterous as lowering your Oxygen levels. High Cholesterol is not a disease.

After a STEMI and 2 stents, I was put on Lipitor 80mg. They only thing MD was concerned about was making the cholesterol numbers as low as possible. Switched me to Crestor 40mg when they weren't low enough. My knees starting getting progressively worse, to the point I was actively pursuing double knee replacement surgery. I mentioned this to MD, was told they only dealt with cardiac issues.

Unrelated to this, we changed our diet to remove most animal products. We asked to reduce the statin dose to see if diet could maintain the numbers at an acceptable level. My knees started getting better, one is 100% and the other is 80+%. I also noticed my memory improving (had attributed to aging) and realized that I had had a hard time concentrating before, which had now cleared up.

After researching side effects of statins, I am firmly convinced my physical issues were directly caused by statin and subsided when the dosage was reduced (now on 5mg). I will continue to reduce as much as possible, but stay on low dose for secondary prevention benefit.

After being on 80mg Lipitor for 2 years, my (R) shoulder had to be rebuilt. SLAP tear, bursitis, tendinitis, and 360 degree rotator cuff tear. I had a significant shoulder injury 10 years prior and I play tennis 3x/week, so I just assumed that was the cause.

But now I wonder, could the Lipitor have been the cause of this health issue?

I was on Remeron/Mertazapine for depression and was one of the people whose triglycerides rose above 500. My MD put me on statins to reduce the triglycerides and high cholesterol. I was also put on Fenofibrate and a tiny amount of lisinopril to protect my kidneys. About two years later I developed type 2 diabetes. My sugar levels were quite high and I was put on Glipizide to help control the sugar levels.

Well, for those of you who know about these drugs, looking back its obvious that I was given drugs to counteract the conditions caused (I believe) by the earlier drugs I was put on. This past March I have had excruciating sciatic nerve pain in my right hip and down my right leg. It has improved with chiropractic care and deep tissue massage, but is not completely healed. The chiropractor urged me to go off the statins and I decided that do that after reading about the side effects. So, I went off almost all the meds.

I changed my diet to remove most of the sugars/carbohydrates, eating mostly proteins and vegetables with fruit and dairy, but almost no grains. I had already added a lot of excessive by starting back in Aikido and Tai Chi plus walking. The result was losing 20 lbs. Over the last year and a half, and sugar levels so normal that I don’t need the Glipizide. So, I hope the sciatic pain goes away, and I wont ever go on those meds again.

With all due respect I must ask what the government has to do with this hyperbole? Also, the medical profession and pharmaceutical industries are private, for profit organizations. It's not the government that wants to "put this drug in the water supply".

You're a nurse, of course I would listen to you! Good luck and I hope you live for another 90 years.

In 2013 I was diagnosed with Diabetes Type II and placed on Metformin 500 mg twice a day, which has worked great for me. Five months ago my Dr. put me on Simvastatin 10 mg once a day. My blood sugar level went from 88 to 131 in a matter of a month.

This has me very depressed and now I am going to stop taking that statin drug or any other statin drug. I will discuss this with him on my next visit. In two years I have managed to reduce my cholesterol from 345 to 221 with a course of Red Yeast Rice, Niacin, Krill Oil and Flaxseed oil so why would I want to take this statin which has caused nausea, vomiting, and sometimes itching as well as an elevated blood sugar???????????????????????????

Leave a comment

Share your comments or questions with the People's Pharmacy online community. Not all comments will be posted. Advice from other visitors to this web site should not be considered a substitute for appropriate medical attention. Concerns about medications should be discussed with a health professional. Do not stop any medication without first checking with your physician.

Check this box to be notified by email when follow-up comments are posted.