Larger Study Confirms Statins' Role in Preventing Cardiac Events

Most persistent users have lower risk of acute cardiac events versus nonpersistent users

FRIDAY, Oct. 5 (HealthDay News) -- A large and unselected community-based study has confirmed the results of randomized controlled trials that have found persistent statin use to be beneficial for the primary prevention of acute cardiac events; the study was published online Sept. 27 in The American Journal of Cardiology.

Varda Shalev, M.D., from Tel Aviv University in Israel, and colleagues examined the effectiveness of statins in primary prevention of acute nonfatal cardiac events in the community setting. Data were analyzed from a cohort of 171,535 adults aged 45 to 75 years, without cardiovascular disease, who were given statins between 1998 to 2009 in a large health maintenance organization in Israel.

The researchers found that the incidence of acute cardiovascular events during the 993,519 person-years of follow-up was 10.22 per 1,000 person-years. Persistence with statins correlated with significantly reduced risk of incident cardiac events. There was a hazard ratio of 0.58 for the most persistent users (covered with statins for 80 percent or more of their follow-up time) compared with non-persistent users (less than 20 percent of days covered). When the analyses were limited to patients with more than five years of follow-up, the results were similar. Treatment with high efficacy statins correlated with a reduced risk of cardiac events.

"In conclusion, our large and unselected community-based study supports the results of randomized controlled trials regarding the beneficial effect of statins in the primary prevention of acute cardiac events," the authors write.

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