Daily Statins For All

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

CNN reports on the statin pushers and their drive to “qualify” a diverse population around the world to take daily statins.

“This will make the case that statins should be used more broadly, in more countries around the world, and in a more diverse population of people,” CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta said.

Gupta also noted that in the United States, there is no longer a specific blood cholesterol or lipid level that is targeted, routine blood testing is no longer recommended,and the overall group of patients being recommended statins has increased. In addition to people who have known heart disease, very high cholesterol or are diabetics, the list of people now being recommended statins was widened to include people older than 40 who have a 7.5% or higher risk of heart attack or stroke within 10 years.

The study authors believe this represents a very simple approach to treatment around the world: 10mg of statins without the need for routine blood tests or clinic visits, he said.

Oh, and this should be noted: “The trial was funded by Canadian Institutes of Health and Research and AstraZeneca, the pharmaceutical company that makes the statin Crestor, which was used in the study, among other drugs.”

Dr. Brownstein, MD, at the Center for Holistic Medicine in southeastern Michigan (where I am a patient/customer), is always on the ball deconstructing each of these pro-statin media hosannas with common sense. And he clarifies this one by explaining how these studies are skewed by interpreting the data in terms of relative risk, not absolute risk.

Several years ago I predicted that the medical-pharmaceutical-government complex would eventually lower the parameters for statin use to the point where they are as common as aspirin across the broader population. The new guidelines from 2014 “increase the number of Americans eligible for statins from about 40 million to 60 million people.” What I wonder is how long it will take for the use of “everyday” pharmaceuticals such as statins to become so normalized that they become mandatory under the guise of “saving us” from horrible medical risks. Perhaps when the masses become further desensitized to the point of full compliance, the anti-statin’ers will become the new “anti-vaxxers.”

Recall the “chewing gum” statement from Merck’s CEO Henry Gadsden, when he told Fortune magazine it was a shame that the company’s products could only be limited to “sick people.” As cited in the book Selling Sickness: How the World’s Biggest Pharmaceutical Companies Are Turning Us All Into Patients, by Ray Moynihan and Alan Cassels:

Suggesting he’d rather Merck to be more like chewing gum maker Wrigley’s, Gadsden said it had long been his dream to make drugs for healthy people. Because then, Merck would be able to “sell to everyone.”

Follow me on Twitter @karendecoster.

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4 Responses to Daily Statins For All

  1. Stephen says:

    April 6th, 2016 at 12:45 pm

    Hi Karen, I’m going through this right now. I’ve always had high cholesterol (high 200s), and always the first thing that pops out of the doctors mouth is “Lipitor”. I’m a 42 yr old male. I could lose a little weight, eat a little better, and exercise more, but to me the doctors approach seems all wrong.

    Now I did have a little scare this past weekend, chest pain, and was admitted to the hospital. All the testing there came out normal and I was continued to be told “Lipitor, Lipitor, Lipitor”. I will be getting a stress test and CT scan latter this week. I know they will keep pushing. Do you think there is a case for statins in some circumstances?

    Thanks, Stephen

  2. Karen De Coster says:

    April 6th, 2016 at 5:41 pm

    Stephen, no one person would ever want to advise you on that. Look at DR. Brownstein’s archives, and elsewhere, where it is advised where/when statins have been shown to have any effect at all in preventing heart events. This is typical:

    https://chriskresser.com/the-diet-heart-myth-statins-dont-save-lives-in-people-without-heart-disease/
    http://www.newsmax.com/Health/Headline/statins-raise-death-risk/2015/10/15/id/696487/
    http://www.ravnskov.nu/2015/12/27/myth-6/

  3. Tom says:

    April 6th, 2016 at 7:56 pm

    Ah, that explains it.  After reviewing my extensive perfect blood tests (or maybe I should say that every single reading was within the stated ranges), including all the cholesterol ones, my general practitioner then started in on his “I want to put you statin drugs” lecture.  I asked why I would need those when all my cholesterol readings were within the approved ranges.  He said, “Because you are at risk of a heart attack.” “What risk,” I asked him.  His answer was that I was 68 years old.  I guess that must be what is meant by relative risk, not absolute risk.  I already knew the bit about the pharmaceutical companies wanting to sell their drugs to well people, so I basically laughed at him and refused to discuss the issue further.

  4. Stephen says:

    April 6th, 2016 at 8:01 pm

    Thank you Karen for the info. 

    I didn’t mean for it to come accross like I was seeking your advice only (though it kind of sounded that way). I know you’ve been on top of this stuff for a long time and could provide some good info/direction.

    Thanks again

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