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CHEST: Statins Cut Stroke Risk in Carotid Artery Disease

Statins significantly reduce rates of stroke, heart attack and all-cause mortality

TUESDAY, Oct. 24 (HealthDay News) -- In patients with severe non-revascularized carotid artery disease, statins significantly reduce stroke, myocardial infarction and all-cause mortality, according to research presented at CHEST 2006, the annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians.

Gautham Ravipati, M.D., of New York Medical College in Valhalla, N.Y., and colleagues analyzed the charts of 449 patients with carotid artery disease, 298 of whom had statin treatment and were followed for a mean of 26 months, and 151 controls who were followed a mean of 21 months.

All statin-treated patients and 96 percent of controls had hypercholesterolemia. All patients had stenosis in one or two carotid arteries, and none had been revascularized.

Statin-treated patients had a 15 percent rate of stroke, myocardial infarction and death, compared to a rate of 68 percent in patients not treated with statins. Statins were effective in diabetics and in non-diabetics with severe carotid artery disease.

"Our study focuses on statin use in patients with severe, carotid artery disease, and our data favor the use of statins in order to reduce the incidence of stroke, myocardial infarction and all-cause mortality in this population," the authors conclude.


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