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Home Industry News Statins cut heart attack risk as ‘first symptom’

Statins cut heart attack risk as ‘first symptom’

27th February 2006

Statins and beta-blockers can significantly reduce the risk of heart attacks in patients with undiagnosed heart disease, claims a new study.

Scientists at the Stanford University School of Medicine in the US suggest that the use of preventative drugs such as statins can help guide patients away from a potentially fatal heart attack towards the less serious symptom of angina, or mild chest pain.

The team claims that the use of the drugs could prevent the occurrence of a heart attack, even if they were unsuccessful in preventing the onset of heart disease.

“You can put up with a little chest pain every once in a while if you know you’re not about to die from it,” said lead researcher Dr Mark Hlatky.

He explained: “While doctors try to prevent coronary disease by treating high blood pressure and high cholesterol, it’s not 100 percent effective.

“If there are warning symptoms like angina with exercise, there is enough time to see a doctor and get started on effective treatments that reduce risk.

“Having a heart attack causes permanent damage, even if it doesn’t kill you.”

The team studied over 1,400 patients over a two year period. They found that only 20 per cent who suffered a heart attack were on a statin, whilst 40 per cent suffered exertional angina as the first symptom.

Dr Hlatky said: “The results were really quite striking.

“These drugs were quite effective in reducing risks of having a heart attack as the first symptom of coronary artery disease.”

track© Adfero Ltd

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