A meta-analysis study, from randomized clinical trials, found that regardless of age, statin therapy is effective in decreasing the risk of developing vascular complications. The study also found no-adverse effects on non-vascular mortality or cancer.
"Statins are a useful and affordable drug that reduce heart attacks and strokes in older patients. Until now there has been an evidence gap and we wanted to look at their efficacy and safety in older people. Our analysis indicates that major cardiovascular events were reduced by about a fifth, per mmol/L lower LDL cholesterol, by statin therapy across all age groups. Despite previous concerns we found no adverse effect on cancer or non-vascular mortality in any age group,” says, Dr. Jordan Fulcher of the Cholesterol Treatment Trialists' (CTT) Collaboration based at the University of Sydney NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre, Australia.
Statins are drugs that work to lower cholesterol levels. They are widely prescribed for patients at risk of heart attacks or strokes.
Learn more about how statins work:
The clinical trials placed participants into six age groups to investigate intensive vs standard therapy while studying the effects of major vascular events including coronary events, strokes and coronary revascularizations. They also examined cancer incidence and cause specific mortality. Results of the study were published in The Lancet.
"Even if risk reduction in people older than 75 years is less than expected, statin therapy may still be justified by a high baseline cardiovascular risk, which is usually present in older people. The present meta-analysis makes a case to reduce LDL cholesterol in people at risk of cardiovascular events regardless of age, provided that the benefits outweigh the risks and the patient accepts long term treatment,” says, Bernard M Y Cheung of the Queen Mary Hospital at the University of Hong Kong.
Source: Science Daily