An article provided by the British Medical Journal to Medicalxpress.com details a study that found statins were no help to healthy elderly people in preventing heart disease. They wrote (abridged):
Statins are not associated with a reduction in cardiovascular disease (conditions affecting the heart and blood vessels) or death in healthy people aged over 75, finds a study published by The BMJ today….
The results of the study, led by the University Institute for Primary Care Research Jordi Gol (IDIAPJGol) and Girona Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBGI), do not support the widespread use of statins in old and very old people…
Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death globally, especially for those aged 75 and over. Statin prescriptions to elderly patients have increased in recent decades, and trial evidence supports statin treatment for people aged 75 years or older with existing heart disease (known as secondary prevention).
But evidence on the effects of statins for older people without heart disease (known as primary prevention) is lacking, particularly in those aged 85 years or older and those with diabetes.
So researchers based in Spain set out to assess whether statin treatment is associated with a reduction in cardiovascular disease and death in old (75-84 years) and very old (85 years and over) adults with and without type 2 diabetes.
Using data from the Catalan primary care system database (SIDIAP), they identified 46,864 people aged 75 years or more with no history ofcardiovascular disease between 2006 and 2015.
Primary care and hospital records were then used to track cases of CVD (including coronary heart disease, angina, heart attack and stroke) and death from any cause (all cause mortality) over an average of 5.6 years.
In participants without diabetes, statin treatment was not associated with a reduction in CVD or all cause mortality in both old and very old age groups, even though the risk of CVD in both groups was higher than the risk thresholds proposed for statin use in guidelines.
Read more here.