Cholesterol-lowering drugs linked to lower death in COVID-19

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Statins are a recommended and common intervention for preventing cardiovascular events by reducing levels of lipoprotein cholesterol in the blood.

During the pandemic, it has been debated whether statins influence the risk of death from COVID-19.

In a new study from Karolinska Institutet, researchers found that statin treatment slightly lowers COVID-19 mortality. They conducted the largest population study to date in the field.

Statins are used to lower the cholesterol level—the lipid count—in the blood and are a common preventative treatment in patients at high risk of cardiovascular events.

During the pandemic, the question of whether statins can reduce COVID-19 mortality via their effects on coagulation and the immune system has engaged scientists and doctors.

Earlier studies have not provided an unequivocal answer and have often suffered from the limitation that they have only included hospital inpatients.

In the study, the team used data from Swedish registers and followed 963,876 residents of Stockholm over the age of 45 between March and November 2020.

The results are based on analyses of data on the participants’ prescribed medication and healthcare and from the Cause of Death Register.

The team found that statin treatment was linked to a slightly lower risk of dying from COVID-19, a correlation that did not vary significantly among risk groups.

The results suggest that statin treatment can have a moderate prophylactic effect on COVID-19 mortality.

The findings support the continued use of statins for conditions such as heart disease and high levels of blood lipids in line with current recommendations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you care about COVID-19, please read studies about people with these blood types may have lower risk of severe COVID-19 and findings of this common blood thinner drug can help inhibit COVID-19 virus.

For more information about COVID-19 and your health, please see recent studies about COVID-19 vaccinations: What you need to know about the second dose and results showing that people with this bone problem twice as likely to die if they have COVID-19.

The study is published in PLOS Medicine. One author of the study is Rita Bergqvist.

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