Do Statins Reduce Dementia? Don't Bet Your Life
Check out this latest study on statins: According to a report in the journal Neurology, researchers are claiming that stains can reduce the risk of dementia. The study followed 1,674 people over 60 years old for five years and found that those on statins had half the incidence of dementia as those not on statins.
I'm sure Big Pharma couldn't be happier about the results - especially on the heels of more and more studies showing that cholesterol isn't the killer the medical community (and statin drug manufacturers) have made it out to be.
This is the perfect bit of news for them to be able to take their already $22 billion per year industry to the next level. After all, taking statins to prevent dementia rather than just to treat high cholesterol opens up an almost limitless market of potential customers. And with the growing fear of dementia, I'm sure plenty of people would be willing to risk the drug's known side effects - depression, mood swings, and strokes, to name a few - for the chance to preserve their sanity.
The lead researcher, Dr. Mary Haan of the University of Michigan School of Public Health, said that this is just "another brick in the wall, in the sense that there is mounting evidence, primarily from observational studies, that there is at least some benefit for prevention of dementia."
Another brick in the wall? I'm not sure what wall she's looking at, but the one I see is stacked with evidence showing the exact opposite.
A study conducted by researchers at the University of Washington found that there was ZERO reduction in the incidence of dementia among patients who were on statins. Another study on Catholic clergy members found the same thing.
A Boston University study found mixed results: Some statin drugs lowered the risk of dementia, while others didn't.
And still other reports, like one from the American Heart Association, showed that a common statin actually had harmful effects on brain function.
Obviously there's no clear-cut medical consensus on the role statins may or may not play in the prevention of dementia. And I'm sure that we've only begun to see the "battle of the headlines" - one saying that statins do prevent dementia, and the next saying that they don't. Back and forth.
Of course, this kind of faulty evidence never slowed Big Pharma down much. If they ever did start to tout statins as a cure for cholesterol AND Alzheimer's, they would surely be dubbed a wonder drug rivaling only aspirin and penicillin in significance and impact.
And, of course, Big Pharma would have a brand new license to print money.
My advice, as always, is to forget about statins. You'll thank me in the end.
William Campbell Douglass I.I., M.D. has been called "the conscience of modern medicine," and the National Health Federation voted him "Doctor of the Year."
To learn more, and to sign up for his "Daily Dose", please visit www.douglassreport.com.
About the author
William Campbell Douglass I.I., M.D. has been called "the conscience of modern medicine."
You can sign up for his "Daily Dose" at DouglassReport.com.