Are Cholesterol Lowering Drugs Safe for Healthy People?

March 31, 2010

statinsA giant drug company is about to expand the market for its blockbuster cholesterol drug, Crestor, all with the government’s blessing.

Astra Zeneca will soon market Crestor to healthy customers as a way to prevent cholesterol problems.

The Food and Drug Administration approved the new criteria last month for Crestor, which is  the nation’s second best-selling statin, behind Pfizer’s Lipitor.  But is that such a good idea.  A recent report in the New York Times says some medical experts question whether that’s a healthy move.

They point to mounting concern that cholesterol medications – known as statins– and already the most widely prescribed drugs in the United States – may not be as safe a preventive medicine as previously believed for people who are at low risk of heart attacks or strokes.

Among the risks raising new concerns, recently published evidence indicates that statins could raise a person’s risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by 9 percent.

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