Navigation Links
Statin Might Help More People Fight Heart Disease Than Thought

Crestor worked well in those with normal LDL but slightly elevated CRP levels, study finds

SUNDAY, Nov. 9 (HealthDay News) -- A widely used cholesterol-lowering drug appears to protect against heart attacks, stroke and other adverse outcomes in people who do not have high cholesterol.

The patients receiving the drug, Crestor (rosuvastatin), did have high levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a marker for the inflammation process which is implicated in hardening of the arteries.

The study, sponsored by drug maker AstraZeneca and conducted by researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston and colleagues, was expected to be presented Sunday at the American Heart Association's annual scientific sessions, in New Orleans. It was also expected to be published in the Nov. 20 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Dr. Howard Weintraub, clinical director of the Center for the Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease at New York University's Langone Medical Center, believes these results will change practice and will expand the universe of people who can benefit from the drug.

"This article conveys clearly that if all you do is use LDL cholesterol as a discriminator for cardiovascular risk, you are going to underestimate cardiovascular risk substantially," he said. "Individuals even with modest LDL can have considerable cardiovascular risk when other factors are present."

One of the study authors agreed. "This shifts the paradigm for evaluating risk and treatment," said Dr. Antonio M. Gotto Jr., dean of Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City.

In a statement, Dr. Elizabeth G. Nabel, director of the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), acknowledged this study and two others concerning CRP.

"New results from three studies being presented at the American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions in New Orleans and published in scientific journals today provide the strongest evidence to date that a simple blood test for high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) is a useful marker for cardiovascular disease," she said.

But other experts urged caution.

"We have to really not lose sight of traditional guidelines," said Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, director of women and heart disease at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. "This is very interesting, but I think we have to wait and see."

According to the NHLBI, about 450,000 Americans will die of coronary heart disease, which is the leading cause of death for both men and women.

People with increased levels of CRP, a marker of inflammation, have a higher risk for cardiovascular events. And about half of all heart attacks and strokes occur in apparently healthy people with lower LDL levels.

Statins are known to lower CRP levels, in addition to cholesterol levels.

The JUPITER trial randomized almost 18,000 men and women with LDL cholesterol levels less than 130 milligrams per deciliter (130 is considered "borderline high") and CRP levels of 2 milligrams per liter or higher (considered average risk) to take 20 milligrams of Crestor daily or a placebo.

Men were 50 years or older, while women were 60 or older, with no history of cardiovascular disease, no diabetes and no uncontrolled hypertension.

"These people would not have been candidates for statins," Weintraub said. "The use of statins right now is entirely related to LDL cholesterol."

The trial was halted after only two of four planned years of follow-up, when researchers noted a significant reduction (44 percent) in the primary endpoint -- a composite of cardiovascular events including heart attack, stroke and death.

Crestor reduced LDL levels by 50 percent and CRP levels by 37 percent.

"We estimate that the application of this simple screening and treatment strategy, when used over a five-year period, would prevent more than 250,000 heart attacks, strokes, revascularizations and cardiovascular deaths in the U.S. alone," said study author Dr. Paul Ridker.

However, one expert was more cautious.

"We cannot say cannot say CRP is a risk factor nor a causal mediator," said Dr. Andrew Tonkin, head of the cardiovascular research unit at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. "I don't think we would screen everyone, not at all at this time. We need to know the absolute risk reductions."

The findings do indicate that women could be taking statins for primary prevention, Gotto said. But the specific age group these findings relate to needs to be kept in mind.

Weintraub doubted that the benefit would be seen with all drugs in the class of statins. "There are features in each of the drugs that makes it better or not as good an anti-inflammatory agent," he said.

More information

The American Heart Association has more on C-reactive protein.

SOURCES: Howard Weintraub, M.D., clinical director, Center for the Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, New York University Langone Medical Center, New York City; Suzanne Steinbaum, D.O., director, women and heart disease, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City; Antonio M. Gotto Jr., M.D., dean and professor, medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York City; Andrew Tonkin, M.D., head, cardiovascular research unit, Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia; Paul Ridker, M.D., Eugene Braunwald professor of medicine, Harvard University, and Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston; statement, Elizabeth G. Nabel, M.D., director, U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; Nov. 20, 2008, New England Journal of Medicine

Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Statins Lower Blood Marker for Prostate Cancer
2. Statin use associated with reduction in prostate specific antigen levels
3. Statins Reduced Death Risk From Pneumonia
4. Statins Lower Risk of Clots in Cancer Patients
5. Statins show promise for blood clot prevention
6. Statins Show Promise for Blood Clot Prevention
7. Heart attack patients who stop statin risk death, say McGill researchers
8. Statins Help Obese People After Bypass Surgery
9. Tianyin Pharmaceutical Co., Inc. Receives Chinese SFDA Approval for Simvastatin Tablets
10. String probes for devastating childhood digestive disease
11. Myostatin inhibitors may improve recovery of wartime limb injuries
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Statin Might Help More People Fight Heart Disease Than Thought
(Date:11/26/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 26, 2015 , ... Jobs in ... by healthcare professionals and offered by healthcare staffing agency Aureus Medical Group . ... the month of October 2015 among those searching for healthcare jobs through the company’s ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... opinion process, participated in the 61st annual Employee Benefits Conference. The Employee Benefits ... place Sunday, November 8th through Wednesday, November 11th, 2015. The conference was held ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... ... and wellness consultation, has collaborated with Women’s Web – an online resource ... on topics on mental and emotional well-being relationship, life balance, stress, professional ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Ill. (PRWEB) , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... and potentially more aggressive than those found on mammography, according to a study ... findings of additional cancers not seen on mammography may necessitate a change in ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... The holiday season is ... pleasing the palates of attendees is of the utmost importance. Whether you are ... get-together, give these recipes a try this holiday season. , Turkey Croquettes , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... North Carolina , 26 november 2015 ... Inc. (AAIPharma/CML) kondigt de geplande investering aan ... uitbreiding van de laboratoria en het mondiale ... . De uitbreiding zal resulteren in extra ... wordt voldaan aan de groeiende behoeften van ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... 3D bioprinting market is expected ... new report by Grand View Research Inc. Rising prevalence of ... kidney transplantation is expected to boost the market growth, as ... transplantation. --> 3D bioprinting market is expected ... new report by Grand View Research Inc. Rising prevalence of ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... --> ... att använda SyMRI för att hitta optimal ... med multipel skleros (MS) eller hjärntumörmetastaser och ... för att kunna använda SyMRI Research Edition ... kan man generera flera konstrastbilder från en ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: