Link between high cholesterol and heart disease inconsistent, scientists say

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Challenging the scientific consensus

After decades of “scientific consensus”, in recent years a series of research question the causality between hypercholesterolemia and cardiovascular disease.

For example, we now know that Too much “good cholesterol” more than doubles the death ratewhile, on the other hand, the the “bad cholesterol” depends on the composition specific to this lipoprotein.

New research supports these questions, revealing that the link between ‘bad cholesterol’ (LDL-C) and events such as heart attacks and strokes may not be as strong as previously thought. .

Published in the famous JAMA internal medicineresearch questions the effectiveness of statins when prescribed for the purpose of lowering LDL-C and, by an alleged consequence, reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD).

Questioning statins

Previous research suggested that using statins to lower LDL-C would have a positive effect on health outcomes, and this was quickly reflected in expert recommendations and guidelines for CVD prevention ( cardiovascular illnesses). As a result, statins are now commonly prescribed by doctors as a preventive measure.

The new findings contradict this theory, revealing that this relationship is not as strong as was concluded from this initial research.

Instead, research has shown that lowering LDL-C using statins has had an inconsistent and inconclusive impact on cardiovascular disease such as myocardial infarction, stroke, and all mortality. combined causes.

Additionally, the overall benefit of taking statins may be small and vary depending on an individual’s personal risk factors.

“The message has long been that lowering cholesterol lowers the risk of heart disease and that statins help achieve this. However, our research indicates that in reality the benefits of taking statins are varied and can be quite modest. “, summarized Paula Byrne, of the RCSI. University (Ireland), which conducted the research with a team from Australia, Denmark and the United States.

The researchers recommend that this updated information be communicated to patients by their physicians and that clinical guidelines and policies be updated to reflect current scientific knowledge.

Check with the scientific article:

Item: Assessing the Association Between Low-Density Lipoprotein Cholesterol Reduction and the Relative and Absolute Effects of Statin Treatment
Authors: Paula Byrne, Maryanne Demasi, Mark Jones, Susan M. Smith, Kirsty K. O’Brien, Robert DuBroff
Publication: JAMA Internal Medicine
DOI: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2022.0134

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