Statin Side Effects, Seniors on Multiple Brain-Affecting Meds & More

Quick Hits: Transvaginal Mesh Pulled, New Weight Loss Drug & More

Patients who experience side effects while on statin medication are more likely to fail to meet cholesterol targets. A Norwegian study examined 1,095 patients hospitalized with a heart attack, coronary artery bypass graft or coronary stent. Researchers found that 57% of patients were failing to meet the cholesterol target of 1.8 mmol/l during follow-up. Patients with statin side effects were more than 3 times more likely to miss the cholesterol target (1.8 mmol/l) than those without side effects, according to the study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. Specific statin side effects (mainly muscle complaints), low adherence to taking the drug, and moderate- or low-intensity statin therapy were the main reasons for failing to meet the target. Posted February 15, 2017. Via Science Daily.

Combining opioid painkillers with certain drugs that impact the brain — such as benzodiazepine tranquilizers — can greatly increase the risk of death. Despite the risk factors with this drug combination, the number of older Americans who take 3 or more medicines that affect their brain has more than doubled in just a decade. Researchers found that the number of doctor visits by people over the age of 65 who were taking 3 or more central nervous system (CNS)-affecting drugs had risen to 1.4% in 2013, compared to 0.6% in 2004. In short, 3.68 million doctor visits a year involve seniors taking multiple CNS drugs, according to the study published in JAMA Internal Medicine. Even more alarming, roughly half of seniors taking these drug combinations did not appear to have a formal diagnosis of a mental health condition, insomnia or pain — the three main types of issues they’re usually prescribed for. Posted February 13, 2017. Via University of Michigan.

Taking opioid painkillers with alcohol could trigger a fatal respiratory problem, breathing difficulty, especially in seniors. Researchers examined how combining the opioid oxycodone and alcohol affected 12 younger volunteers, aged 21 to 28, and 12 older volunteers, aged 66 to 77. Results, published in the journal Anesthesiology, showed that taking just 1 oxycodone tablet with a modest amount of alcohol increased the risk of respiratory depression. The older volunteers, in particular, were more likely than the younger ones to have reoccurring instances where they stopped breathing temporarily. Posted February 8, 2017. Via HealthDay.


Jonathan Block

Jonathan Block

Jonathan Block is an associate editor at BioCentury, which provides news and information about the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Prior to joining BioCentury in 2019, Jonathan worked for MedShadow as content editor. He has been an editor and writer for multiple pharmaceutical, health and medical publications, including The Pink Sheet, Modern Healthcare, Health Plan Week and Psychiatry Advisor. He holds a BA from Tufts University and is earning an MPH with a focus on health policy from the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health & Health Policy.


Did you find this article helpful?

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.


Latest News

Belviq, ActiPatch, Free Samples, Dollar Tree Drugs

Belviq, ActiPatch, Free Samples, Dollar Tree Drugs

We knew it was too good to be true – free and cheap drugs aren’t worth it. Also, taking a magic pill to lose weight could give you cancer (!). One ray of sunshine: a pain therapy device using shortwave is now available over-the-counter. Have a lovely Valentine’s Day! Be…

Flouride, PPIs, Breast Density and Prostate Cancer

Flouride, PPIs, Breast Density and Prostate Cancer

Startling news about fluoride, a study encourages more limites use of PPIs, does knowing the density of your breasts matter, and vegetables aren’t helpful in warding off prostate cancer (darn).  Be Well.  Fluoride and Pregnancy The medical community was shocked at the conclusions of two new studies on fluoride’s effect…

  • Advertisement