How safe is your cholesterol medication?

Statins, medication prescribed to people at high risk of heart attack or stroke, have hit the headlines with claims they are causing terrible side-effects in everyone taking them. But what is the reality and is your cholesterol medication safe?

The reality is much less extreme. Evidence shows that taking statins over a long period of time could increase your risk of type 2 diabetes. But, to put that in perspective, for every 255 people treated with statins for four years, at least five cardiovascular events are avoided, and only one extra case of diabetes is shown.

So if you are taking statins, do not stop your medication. If you are concerned go and speak to your doctor. They will be able to draw up a risk assessment table to help you work out if the benefits of the medication outweigh the risk of possible side effects. Going off your medication without consulting an expert can be much more dangerous than taking it as prescribed

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