Statins could prevent heart disease and extend life in older people

Credit: Unsplash+

A recent study conducted by the University of Hong Kong has brought to light the effectiveness of statin therapy in preventing cardiovascular disease (CVD) and reducing the risk of death from any cause among adults aged 60 and older, including those 85 years and older.

Published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, this research utilized electronic health records to explore the benefits of statins as a primary prevention strategy for CVD.

The researchers employed a method known as target trial emulation, analyzing patient data from the Hong Kong Hospital Authority’s extensive health records system.

The study specifically focused on patients over 60 who had no prior diagnosis of CVD but were deemed suitable for statin treatment based on their medical profiles.

This study ran from January 2008 to December 2015, excluding any patients who had already been using statins or other lipid-lowering drugs, as well as those with pre-existing conditions like cancer, myopathies, or liver dysfunction.

The primary aim was to assess the effects of various statin medications on major cardiovascular outcomes and overall mortality rates.

The follow-up period for each patient lasted until they either reached one of the study’s outcomes, passed away, were lost to follow-up, or until the study concluded.

The findings revealed a notable decrease in both the incidence of major cardiovascular diseases and all-cause mortality across all age groups starting from age 60, with continued benefits observed even in participants who were 85 years and older.

Notably, the use of statin therapy did not lead to an increase in adverse events such as myopathies or liver dysfunction, which are often cited as concerns with statin use in older populations.

These results are particularly significant as they suggest that statin therapy can be a valuable tool in the primary prevention of cardiovascular diseases in older adults, potentially extending their lifespan and improving their quality of life.

This study underscores the importance of considering statin therapy for older adults who are at risk of cardiovascular diseases but have not yet experienced cardiac events.

By demonstrating the safety and efficacy of statins in an older population, this research could lead to more widespread adoption of statin therapy in age groups that are often underrepresented in clinical trials.

This research also highlights the potential for using electronic health records as a powerful tool for conducting large-scale studies that can inform clinical practices and healthcare policies, especially concerning the aging population.

With cardiovascular diseases remaining a leading cause of death globally, findings like these are crucial for developing strategies to reduce the burden of these diseases on older adults.

If you care about high blood pressure, please read studies about potatoes and high blood pressure, and top 10 choices for a blood pressure-friendly diet

For more information about high blood pressure, please see recent studies about impact of vitamins on high blood pressure you need to know, and the powerful link between high blood pressure and a potassium-rich diet.

The research findings can be found in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Copyright © 2024 Knowridge Science Report. All rights reserved.