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Statins & vitamins

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Antioxidants produced no "beneficial or adverse effects on vascular or non-vascular morbidity or mortality" in patients taking statins, University of Oxford researchers report at AHA meeting Nov. 13. Heart Protection Study comprised 20,536 subjects ages 40-80 with a history of occlusive vascular disease or diabetes. Subjects were given either 40 mg simvastatin (Merck's Zocor) or placebo daily; half of each subgroup was randomized to placebo or vitamin cocktail (600 mg vitamin E, 250 mg vitamin C, 20 mg beta carotene). Hoffman-LaRoche provided raw antioxidants, Pharmavite the finished vitamin products. Researchers report simvastatin reduced "major vascular events" in a "wide range of high-risk patients for whom there had previously been uncertainty about using cholesterol-lowering therapy," including people over 70 and those with LDL below 116mg/dL. Public health findings could have statin OTC switch implications...

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