Those of you who have been following the Daily Health for a while, will know that one of the biggest thorns in my flesh is cholesterol-lowering statin drugs.
It’s not only the unnecessary over-prescription of these drugs that grinds my gears, but also the fact that the mainstream refuses to acknowledge the long and growing list of debilitating side effects associated with statins…
And then sometimes, I read a news headline that gives me a glimmer of hope that somehow the mainstream is beginning to see the truth behind these drugs.
Risk versus benefit ratio
“People are taking this drug to prevent a problem and [are] creating a disaster.”
Those are the words of Professor Sherif Sultan, President of the International Society for Vascular Surgery, who analysed various studies investigating the cholesterol-lowering drugs and he concluded that the so-called benefits of statin drugs were based on “statistical deception”.
I’ve been saying this for years… a few medical experts have stepped forward and said the same… and now, yet another heart specialist is warning people that taking statin drugs is doing much more harm than good.
Professor Sultan also warned that the positive results of the use of statins in past studies, like the JUPITER trial, may have been influenced by bias as they were conducted by researchers who were employed by statin manufacturers.
He added that the results of many studies have been kept under wraps because they demonstrated that statin drugs can accelerate artery hardening (atherosclerosis), which is a known risk factor for heart attacks. These are the same studies that showed a link between statin use and an increased risk of diabetes, cataracts, impotence, breast cancer, nerve damage, depression, muscle pain, and renal and liver failure.
Commenting on the findings of Prof. Sultan, Sir Richard Thompson, former President, the Royal College of Physicians, said: “Data needs to be urgently scrutinised. We are very worried about it and particularly side-effect data which seems to have been swept under the carpet.”
In addition, a group of highly respected European doctors said that the theory on which statins are based – that lowering ‘bad’ cholesterol cuts heart disease – is “fundamentally flawed”. They added that the supposed evidence that statins save lives is “underwhelming”. (By the way, they are right, because no direct link between high cholesterol levels and cardiovascular disease has ever been scientifically established. It’s true!)
As expected, the statin camp is not batting an eyelid. Dr June Raine, Director of Vigilance and Risk Management, of the Medicines Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA), said: “The benefits of statins are well established and are considered to outweigh the risk of side effects in the majority of patients.”
Uh… yes… that argument almost sounds like the rhetoric we are hearing from politicians lately.
Perhaps Dr Raine should consider that the supposed “benefits” of statins are well-established only because the risks and associated side effects (of which there are plenty) are being ignored by those who are benefitting most from these drugs being pushed to millions of people — Big Pharma, medical regulators and researchers receiving backhand deals and doctors who are incentivised when they prescribe statin drugs.
Unfortunately, the statin debate doesn’t look like it will ever come to an end… And while we’re waiting, if you are taking a statin drug and are worried about physical symptoms you’ve never experienced and your doctor is dismissing your concerns, the final decision lies with you if you want to continue taking this drug.
Just remember, if you follow your doctor’s recommendation taking this drug will continue for a lifetime and so will the side effects.
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Disclaimer: Bear in mind the material contained in this article is provided for information purposes only. We are not addressing anyone’s personal situation. Please consult with your own physician before acting on any recommendations contained herein.
Statins’ side effects may outweigh any benefits, a leading heart expert warns, published online 24.04.17, dailymail.co.uk