(Health Secrets) We are told by the medical profession that drugs are prescribed based on a professional estimation of risk versus benefit. A study published in the British Medical Journal has demonstrated that when it comes to statin drugs, the benefits that might be realized by a tiny number of people are outweighed by a larger risk of serious harm to many.
The study was conducted by the University of Nottingham’s Julia Hippisley-Cox, professor of clinical epidemiology and general practice, and Carol Coupland, associate professor in medical statistics. In their study, the researchers measured the unintended effects of statin drugs. They studied data on 2,004,692 patients aged 30-84 years including 225,922 patients who were new statin users. The data was collected from 368 general practices in England and Wales.
Despite all the years of the pharmaceutical industry claiming that stain drugs are virtual “miracle” medicines which not only prevent millions of heart attacks and strokes but also have numerous other benefits, the new study found just the opposite. According to the study results, only a few people benefited from decreased risk of serious coronary events, and other than a small statistical improvement for risk of esophageal cancer, no other benefits were found whatsoever.
On the other hand, the study found significant increased risks for moderate or serious liver dysfunction, acute renal failure, and moderate to serious myopathy (disease of muscle tissue) and cataracts in statin users. They also found evidence of a dose related response for acute renal failure and liver dysfunction, with higher doses being associated with greater risk.
By the pharmaceutical companies’ own admission, most drugs don’t work on most people. When it comes to statin drugs, they only reduce cardiac disease 2.7% of the time, while causing serious damage in about 4.4% of those who take them. Put another way, if you take statin drugs, you have less than 3 in 100 odds of benefiting and over 4 in 100 odds of being harmed. Over 92 out of every 100 people would be neither helped nor seriously harmed, but would nevertheless be needlessly enriching the drug companies while polluting our waterways and water supplies every time they flush the toilet.
This means that overall, for every 10,000 high risk women treated with statin drugs, there would be approximately 271 fewer cases of cardiovascular disease, 8 fewer cases of esophageal cancer, 74 extra patients who experience liver dysfunction, 23 extra patients with acute renal failure, 307 extra patients with cataracts, and 39 extra patients with myopathy.
The study concluded: “Claims of unintended benefits of statin drugs, except for esophageal cancer, remain unsubstantiated, although potential adverse effects at population level were confirmed and quantified. Further studies are needed to develop utilities to individualize the risks so that patients at highest risk of adverse events can be monitored closely.”
The increased risks for most of the conditions identified returned to near normal within one to three years after discontinuing statin use, with the exception that the risk of extreme muscle weakness (myopathy) remained significantly higher even after three years of discontinuing statin use.
When it comes to risk factors associated with heart attack and stroke, such as high blood pressure, high “bad” cholesterol (or better put, unhealthy LDL cholesterol to HDL cholesterol ratio), obesity, sedentary lifestyle and arterial plaque, nature together with a healthy diet and lifestyle offers much safer and more effective options.
As a sample of some safer natural alternatives to statins:
* Cayenne Pepper
* Essential Fatty Acids
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