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Are Statins (Cholesterol medications) necessary in persons over the age of 80?

Aug 02, 2016

A recent study in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society suggests that statins do not improve length of life after age 80. In a study of 1262 patients, followed for three years, who had either unstable angina, coronary heart disease or history of a heart attack it appears that statins did not prolong life. The patients studied were all discharged from the hospital and about 3/4 had statins on discharge while the remaining 1/4 had no statin therapy. There was no change in the length of life for either group. This study did not address quality of life on or off the statins. The doctor and the patient will ultimately decide if statin use is warranted.

NEJM Journal Watch July 28th 2016

Citation: Rothschild DP et al. Effect of statin therapy on mortality in older adults hospitalized with coronary heart disease: A propensity-adjusted analysis. J Am Geriatr Soc 2016 Jul;64:1475.