Widespread Statin Use Not Recommended in Old, Very Old

No benefit in healthy elderly patients; protective effect limited to those with type 2 DM aged 75 to 84

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THURSDAY, Sept. 6, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Statin use is not associated with reduced risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (CVD) or all-cause mortality among older adults without type 2 diabetes, according to a study published online Sept. 5 in The BMJ.

Rafel Ramos, M.D., Ph.D., from the Institut Universitari d'Investigació en Atenció Primària Jordi Gol in Catalonia, Spain, and colleagues conducted a retrospective cohort study involving 46,864 participants aged 75 years or older without clinically recognized atherosclerotic CVD.

The researchers found that among participants without diabetes, the hazard ratios for statin use in 75- to 84-year-olds were 0.94 (95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.86 to 1.04) and 0.98 (95 percent CI, 0.91 to 1.05) for atherosclerotic CVD and all-cause mortality, respectively; for those aged 85 years and older, the corresponding hazard ratios were 0.93 (95 percent CI, 0.82 to 1.06) and 0.97 (95 percent CI, 0.90 to 1.05). Among those with diabetes, the corresponding hazard ratios for statin use were 0.76 (95 percent CI, 0.65 to 0.89) and 0.84 (95 percent CI, 0.75 to 0.94) in those aged 75 to 84 years, and 0.82 (95 percent CI, 0.53 to 1.26) and 1.05 (95 percent CI, 0.86 to 1.28) for those aged 85 years and older.

"These results do not support the widespread use of statins in old and very old populations, but they do support treatment in those with type 2 diabetes younger than 85 years," the authors write.

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