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More over-75s should take statins: Experts

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Health Desk- Feb 04, 2019: More people over the age of 75 should be taking statins, scientists have said, following a review of research.

There had been a lack of evidence about how much the cholesterol-lowering drugs benefit this age group.

But the review found they cut the risk of major cardiovascular disease in all ages studied, including the over-75s.

Researchers said thousands of lives could be saved each year if more than the estimated third of UK over-75s who do take statins, were given them.

They also said it could improve quality of life for many people.

Cardiovascular disease kills about 150,000 people in the UK each year, with two-thirds of these occurring in people over the age of 75.

Statins reduce the build-up of fatty plaques that lead to blockages in blood vessels, though reported side effects and the extent of how often they are prescribed has attracted controversy.

Authors of the paper said there had until now been an "evidence gap" around how effective the drugs are for the elderly.

However, the authors said even a smaller reduction in risk was significant because the elderly have a higher baseline risk for cardiovascular disease in the first place.

Courtesy: BBC Health