Lipitor’s benefits reach beyond preventing Heart disease to lowering the risk of cancer and preventing Dementia
My parents were prescribed Lipitor recently and, being a Pharmacist, they asked for my advice and particularly my opinion on what I thought of Lipitor. They were slightly concerned, as they didn’t want to take any new medicine unless they thought it would be beneficial to their health. They, in effect wanted to do what many people of their generation wanted to do, that of course was to make an informed decision on whether to start Lipitor or not.
So, in order to give my parents the best advice possible, I decided to approach the subject of Lipitor’s effectiveness, as I would have done preparing reports when I was in university. This would mean I would spend time researching published papers on Lipitor, and the evidence would speak for itself.
First off – How does Lipitor work?
Lipitor reduces LDL cholesterol levels in the blood thereby preventing plaque build-up in artery walls and thus protecting against blocked blood vessels and heart attack or stroke (Drug watch 2016).
Lipitor is also the most powerful statin with the biggest cholesterol lowering effect (Heark UK 2014).
The next obvious question – Is Lipitor effective?
In December 2002, The United States National Cholesterol Program Expert Panel in Detection, Evaluation and treatment of high blood cholesterol in adults released their findings (National Institutes of Health 2001):
93% of patients with 1 or 2 risk factors for C.H.D. (Coronary Heart Disease) reached their target cholesterol level using Lipitor.
65% of patients with more than 2 risk factors for C.H.D. reached their target cholesterol level using Lipitor.
The risk of death by Heart attack or stroke was reduced by a whopping 44%.
So, we can conclude quite categorically, that Lipitor is effective at reducing strokes & Heart attacks.
Lipitor’s involvement in cancer prevention
But Lipitor’s extraordinary story doesn’t end here. My research led me to another study, published on November 8th 2012, in the world renowned, New England Journal of Medicine. The study showed that people who take statins were 15% less likely to die an early death from Cancer (Sune et al 2012). The authors of the study went on to say that the protection may be comparable to Chemotherapy, and I quote “The benefits of receiving chemotherapy versus not receiving chemotherapy is 15% to 20% - depending on the cancer type”, which is a similar benefit to taking statins, without the toxic side effects of chemotherapy drugs.
So, Lipitor not only reduces the risk of heart attacks and strokes in at risk patients by 44%, but could also help in the prevention of some cancers.
Lipitor can actually prevent dementia
But once again, Lipitor’s extraordinary benefits on human health goes even further. In August 2013, a study published in the European Society of Cardiology found that high doses of statins prevent dementia in older people (Lin et al 2013). The study goes on to say that patients who received high doses of statins had a three-fold decrease in the risk of developing dementia. Dr. Lin, who carried out the research, concluded by saying that high doses of statins actually prevent dementia.
I was pretty stunned to find that Lipitor had these other far reaching benefits, outside of reducing heart attacks and strokes. I was beginning to think that Lipitor was a genuine wonder drug and serious consideration should be given to providing Lipitor to every person in the country over 45 years old, purely on the cost saving benefits alone.
I ended my research on Lipitor with the American Heart Association, who described Lipitor as highly effective in reducing LDL cholesterol in blood and pose very few immediate short term side effects (One pill, many benefits? — Statins’ potential may extend beyond lowering cholesterol 2016).
In fact, the side effects can be reduced even further by taking a supplement called Co-Q-10.
I’ll finish with this, there are Cardiologists in the United States that think Lipitor should be added to the water supply because they are so beneficial to human health.
After all my research, the question I found myself asking was, if you are over 50 years old and not taking Lipitor, then the question is “Why not?”.
Garvan J. Lynch
M.B.A. (Public Health) D.I.C.
B.Sc. (Hons) Pharm. M.P.S.I. M.R.Pharm.S.
B.Sc. (Hons) G.R.S.C.
B.Sc. (Gen) N.U.I.
Drugwatch (2016) Lipitor :Statin & cholesterol drug uses, dosage & diabetes risk. Available at https://www.drugwatch.com/lipitor/(Accesses:10 December 2016).
European Society of Cardiology. "High dose statins prevents dementia, study suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 August 2013.