Thursday, April 5, 2012

Statins increase the risk of Type 2 Diabetes a little and reduce heart disease risk a lot

Statins increase the risk for Diabetes ( Type 2 ) !

A look at the risk of taking a statin

 This has been a topic of discussion on the evening news and in medical community.
An article in the March 15, 2012 Internal Medicine news that made a statement that I agree with " this should not change any clinician's  day to day practice in any way".

In the article Dr. Jennifer G. Robertson, professor of medicine and epidemiology at the university of Iowa estimates that of the 10 to 15 % of patients who will develop Type 2 Diabetes over the next several years on statin treatment, roughly one case out of 500 will be attributable to statins".

People who are at the greatest risk of progressing to diabetes is someone with Pre-Diabetes  with fasting plasma glucose levels between 115 and 125 mg/dl.

The potential increase in glucose related to statins  is 5 to 7 mg/dl according to Dr. Roger S. Blumenthal professor of medicine and Director of preventive medicine at Johns Hopkins Medical institutions in Baltimore.

A look at the benefits of taking a Statin

 One among many studies outlying the benefits of taking a statin is the CARDS Study. This study was done on typical people with Type 2 diabetes

2838 patients age 40 to 75 with type 2 diabetes with no documented history of Heart Disease who had:
           LDL cholesterol of 4.14 mm/l ( 159 mg/dl ) or less
           Triglyceride level of 6.7mm/l    (592 mg/dl)  or less

           with one other risk factor, retinopathy ,albumin urea ,current smoking or high blood pressure

 1410 patients received  atorvastatin ( lipitor ) 10 mg/day and the other half received a placebo

The patients taking lipitor ( atorvastatin) after  3.9 years had :
      Acute coronary  disease events          reduced 36%         compared to placebo
      coronary revascularisations                reduced  31 %       compared to placebo
      Strokes                                               reduced  48%        compared to placebo
      Death rate                                           reduced  27%        compared to placebo

You make the call

Have  Fun , be Smart  and take a Statin
David Calder, MD

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Your comments and questions are appreciated. David Calder,MD