In light of the recent decision by the UK health authorities to approve inclisiran for use in patients, I thought it would be interesting to delve in to how good the class of drugs it belongs to, the PCSK9 inhibitors, really are. PCSK9 inhibitors can be thought of as “next generations statins”. Like statins, they work under the assumption that the lipid transport molecule LDL … Read more
How much do statins prolong life?
One problem with all the trials of statins is that they look at the probability of still being alive after x years. But that’s not really the question patients want answered. Patients want to know how much longer they can expect to live if they take a statin every day for the rest of their lives. Is it weeks? months? years? decades?
Considering that statins … Read more
Is the cholesterol hypothesis dead?
Is there any life left in the cholesterol hypothesis (a.k.a. the lipid hypothesis)? Is there anything left for serious scientists to cling to or is time for its mouldering corpse to end up on the trash heap of medical history, alongside lobotomy, bloodletting and the theory of the four humors? I was asked this question by a reader of this blog recently, and as it … Read more
Do statins save lives?
Ok, it’s a silly question I admit. As any physician, and anyone else who thinks about it for a few seconds knows, there is no such thing as saving lives. You can only postpone death. So a more nuanced question is required: “Do statins postpone death?”. My mother sure thinks they do, since she’s been popping an atorvastatin a day for the last couple of … Read more