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Medical Group Warns of Risks Statin Drugs Pose for Seniors

Nov 1, 2013

An influential group of medical professionals believes that statin drugs serve no benefit to older patients, especially those suffering from another disease that increases their risk of death or lowers their life expectancy.

The American Medical Directors Association (AMDA) has recently developed a "Choosing Wisely" campaign to assist patients and doctors to make the best choices about their healthcare options and which treatments to pursue and avoid in different situations. One of the association's main concerns is the use of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs in elderly patients, according to a New York Times report.

Statin drugs, based on our previous reports, are routinely prescribed to prevent heart attacks, strokes, blood clots, and death; millions of Americans have taken a statin drug.

Despite the lack of evidence supporting statins as an effective treatment for senior patients, many doctors are still prescribing them for seniors, the AMDA’s advice notwithstanding. In its "Choosing Wisely" campaign, the AMDA warns: "Don’t routinely prescribe lipid-lowering medications in individuals with a limited life expectancy," according to the New York Times report.

AMDA warns that statin drugs may be ineffective at preventing blood clots and could cause an increase in the risk of muscle pain, gastrointestinal pain, memory loss, diabetes, and possibly some forms of cancer, according to the New York Times.

Based on our previous accounts, statin drugs like Zocor have been recently linked to a severe muscle injury known as rhabdomyolysis, especially during the first year of treatment. Rhabdomyolysis can eventually lead to severe liver damage, liver failure, and even death.

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