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View Poll Results: Do you currently or have you in the past used statins?
No, I don't now and have never used them. 58 51.79%
Yes, I use them. 49 43.75%
I did use them but discontinued because of side effects or other issues. 4 3.57%
I used them but no longer need them. No adverse effects noted. 1 0.89%
Voters: 112. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-23-2010, 08:12 AM   #41
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No statins, but my doc has me on 1500mg Niacin a day, which runs about $15 a month.

Coach
I asked my druggist about it and he said it was a good alternative to statins, particularly if you are a borderline case. He thinks it is safer. He did say to take a low dose aspirin 30 minutes before taking the med to head off a flushing feeling you can get with niacin. I plan to ask my doc about it.

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I could not answer the question as stated. I have never used prescription statins. I am using red yeast rice. In fact I am part of a year long study to test the effectiveness of this supplement. So far I am please with the results I am seeing.
This has worked for a friend of mine. His doc was trying to get him to take a statin but kept putting him off and then tried red yeast rice. His doc couldn't figure out how his numbers improved so well on his next test. But I never tried it because red yeast contains lovastatin, the same generic drug I take anyway. Plus from what I read, you may never be getting the same amount of the statin as it is not regulated. And I can buy my generic drug from Walmart at a cheaper price than the an otc red yeast rice brand.
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Old 05-23-2010, 08:41 AM   #42
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My cholesterol level has been borderline. I reduced it with diet.
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Old 05-23-2010, 11:59 AM   #43
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Borderline too, but I take Pravastatin; like others, I get a 90 day supply for $10 at Target, Walmart or other major pharmacies. Been taking it for over 2 years; I'm thinking about going off of it when I see my primary doctor this Fall.
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Old 05-23-2010, 01:51 PM   #44
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Rich, what are the benefits of taking statins?

I've seen headlines of studies saying that a fair number of them lower cholestorel, but don't actually seem to reduce the bad events that we associate with high cholestorel...
That's a highly pertinent question. In a nutshell, there is convincing evidence (IMHO) that statins reduce morbidity and prolong life in patients who have had a heart attack or similar event (secondary prevention). For those with high readings but no prior events, the statins probably help more than harm - they clearly lower the blood tests, but their role in disease prevention is suggestive but not definitive. Diabetes is an exception - those with high readings and diabetes likely do benefit from statins, as do those with striking family history of early coronary disease.

Finally, for those with normal blood tests and no other risk factors, it is not proven that statins provide any benefit.

In any event, the absolute derived benefit is usually less than 1% per year.
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As if you didn't know..If the above message contains medical content, it's NOT intended as advice, and may not be accurate, applicable or sufficient. Don't rely on it for any purpose. Consult your own doctor for all medical advice.
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Old 05-23-2010, 03:05 PM   #45
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Yes, I take Vytorin and have done so for several years. It immediately reduced my cholesterol to levels that make my doctor beam with joy.

I just wish it wasn't so expensive. Even with my somewhat plush federal health benefits, I still pay $31.26 plus tax every month for it. I asked my doctor to switch me to a generic instead, and he said he would. Since Vytorin actually includes two drugs he wrote me separate prescriptions for each, but it turned out that one was not available as a generic. The result was even higher monthly expense so I went back to Vytorin.
Of course talk to your MD, but skip the Zetia portion of the Vytorin and get the Zocor/simvastatin part. #100 for $10 at Costco

Zetia is supposed to work by blocking the absorption of cholesterol from the food you eat. If you eat a fairly healthy diet anyhow, then it isn't doing as much good.
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Old 05-23-2010, 03:08 PM   #46
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Lipitor cost is close to the same for 20, 40, or 80mg. Was started on 40, asked to be reduced to 20 and cholesterol stayed low enough, then asked my doc to prescribe 80mg for me to 1/4. Pills split one time much better than twice, but the savings are well worth it to me.

Look for a Lipitor generic in 1st quarter of 2011. Of course with all the games legal options that the drug companies have, it might be mid to end of 2011
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Old 05-23-2010, 08:24 PM   #47
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In a nutshell, there is convincing evidence (IMHO) that statins reduce morbidity and prolong life in patients who have had a heart attack or similar event (secondary prevention).
That certainly goes along with the information I have relied on in deciding to continue taking Lipitor, which, I believe, has been show to reduce morbidity. I had "an episode" (I call it a "near heart attack") in 2000, so I know that I am risk, so I keep on a-takin' my Lipitor.
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Old 05-31-2010, 08:49 AM   #48
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Statins should only be used for selected patients where the numbers and risk factors are such that the risks are outweighed by the benefits.

For primary prevention in a healthy person, they are not indicated.
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Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa View Post

In any event, the absolute derived benefit is usually less than 1% per year.
I took Crestor for just over a year. The joint stiffness & mild arthralgia symptoms had an insidious onset. I had a lightbulb moment when I reached the point where I struggled to turn over in bed. I decided after researching (& without consultation with my dr) to stop taking the Crestor. Within 3 weeks there was dramatic improvement! Next dr visit, I told him I'd stopped the Crestor & why I did it. He discounted my theory of correlation, while I am convinced . He was okay with me stopping tho', telling me that it only reduced my risk by 1% (which he had not even mentioned @ the outset). I really have zero risk factors, aside from ^cholesterol. And any online "test" of risk factors, it seems, gives everyone a minimum of 2% risk factor (if you are breathing, you could die).

I very much believe that the dr did not do a good job of weighing the risk/benefit factors for me. I suspect that there are many folks just like me & that statins are over Rx'd. And given the insidious arthritis symptoms coupled with aging, it is easy to pass this side effect off as "simply getting older".

Oh, and if i recall correctly my chol was 250 or so, 65 HDL & 100 or so LDL. BTW, my 91 pound, 96 year old Mom has had ^chol for decades, & has never taken statins, no aches or pains either. (Good genes for me!)
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Old 05-31-2010, 03:51 PM   #49
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In 2007, my chol was about 287, so the doc said take some zocor. He didn't ask about my diet or exercise habits. I had been on a ship for the past 5 months eating the only food available (lots of fried stuff, minimal fresh produce), so I basically told him to pack sand, and I'd get re-tested in about 4 months. I got on shore duty, started eating more oatmeal and cut out the cheese and fried stuff except for maybe 1-2 times a week.
After 4 months, total chol was down to 196.
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Old 05-31-2010, 04:32 PM   #50
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I was sent a prescription for mevacor in the mail after taking a blood test in 2007. I freaked out I never filled it. Instead I changed my diet and lost 30 lbs. My latest blood test came back the best with 178 total. Ldl 106 Hdl 64 and triglycerides about 41. But I don't think a lot of people would want to eat like I do. I would describe it as more of a Mediterranean type diet with fish, veggies, fruit, nuts, beans. I keep restaurant visits down. I also keep a log of calories, carbs, fiber, fat, protein and sodium when I don't eat out. But keeping track allows me to adjust my diet. Unfortunately my fasting glucose went up a notch to hit that dreaded 100. But looking at my log I noticed I was eating way too many carbs. and have since cut back there and added monounsaturated fats. And I keep my fiber in the 30s usually. I've found that keeping track of the above has the same effect as keeping track of expenses (which I've done for years). I think I like the control it gives me.
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Old 05-31-2010, 06:44 PM   #51
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Congratulations, you made a very adaptive response to your situation, and when it worked you stuck with it, keeping the data you need to adjust course as you go.

Ha
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