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Statins Could be Cause of Even More Muscle-Related Injuries

Filed June 5th, 2013 edlieber1

Cholesterol-lowering drugs, or statins, may be associated with even more muscle problems than researchers previously thought, a new study suggests.

Researchers from the VA North Texas Health Care System in Dallas compared two similar groups of veterans enrolled in military health insurance. People in the first group had been prescribed a statin sometime in 2004 and 2005; those in the second group did not take statins during the study period. Researchers found those taking a statin were around 10 percent more likely to have muscle pain, sprains or strains, Reuters reported.  They found that of those in the group prescribed statins between 2004 and 2005 (about 14,000 people), 87 percent had some type of muscle or joint problem, compared to 85 percent of those who didn’t take a statin.

The results were similar to a study conducted by researchers at JAMA Internal Medicine. Medical records showed muscle pain among 73.5 percent of statin users, compared to 71.5 percent of non-users in the JAMA study, according to Reuters. That study looked at results from over 46,000 people and concluded that musculoskeletal conditions, arthropathies, injuries, and pain are more common in statin users than among similar nonusers, reported.

According to Reuters, close to one-quarter of all U.S. adults aged 45 and older take statins to help protect against heart attacks and strokes. The drugs are often recommended to people with diabetes or a history of cardiovascular problems.

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