FOX 47 - Health News
Now, a major drug maker wants to sell them to healthy people, as a way to prevent heart disease.
Crestor, the second-best selling cholesterol medication, will begin a new marketing strategy, and they're doing it with the government's blessing.
About 40 million people in this country take cholesterol medications, but new guidelines, approved by the FDA, would open the pharmacy to 6.5 million more people -- people with no cholesterol problems and no sign of heart problems.
Some doctors are putting up some red flags.
Studies show statins can increase a patient's risk for diabetes, liver disease, and muscle aches.
Dr. David Shearer is a family physician with Dean Health. He says taking a pill is not always the solution, and people need to focus on preventative steps.
"Stopping smoking, losing weight, eating a balanced diet, these lifestyle modifications are risk-free," Dr. Shearer said.
Still, statin use is skyrocketing. Doctors wrote more than 200 million prescriptions for cholesterol drugs last year. Usage doubled over the last decade, but it remains to be seen whether these new marketing strategies will mean more people will take the drugs.
"My prediction is it will not be widely accepted by the medical community," said Dr. Matthew Wolff, UW Hospital cardiologist.
Dr. Wolff says prescribing statins to people with little to no risk factors won't have a significant health impact, and will likely end up costing a lot of money.
"I think that's where the controversy arises -- it applies to the risk, but maybe more importantly to the expense of the drug. When you talk about treating potentially millions of people, you're only going to see a modest reduction in heart attacks, strokes, and deaths in the United States," Dr. Wolff said.
Both Shearer and Wolff say best advice for people is to have a one-on-one conversation with their doctor.
The new Crestor label says it may be prescribed for men over 50, and women over 60, who have one risk factor like smoking or hypertension.
Sun. - Fri. on FOX 47 News at 9!
Top Health Headlines (foxnews.com)
|Parents' whooping cough vaccines may protect babies|
When babies are too young to get the whooping cough vaccine, vaccinating their parents might protect them from the dangerous infection, a new study suggests.
|Probe finds death of girl sent home from hospital three times likely preventable|
The investigation into the death of a 7-year-old girl who died within hours of leaving a third doctor’s office has ended with the corner concluding her death was likely preventable.
|Smoking rates on the rise in New York City|
More New Yorkers are smoking.
|Elisabeth Hasselbeck raises money for Noreen Fraser Foundation|
For the past four years, we have been involved with Cantor Fitzgerald (BGC Partners) Charity Day. It is a day to remember all those lost on 9/11 and to come together to do good for several charities worldwide.
|Brain may compensate for Alzheimer's damage in some patients|
The brains of some Alzheimer’s patients may be able to compensate for early neurological changes associated with the disease, BBC News reported.
Tonight on FOX 47
5:00pm Two and a Half Men
5:30pm Big Bang Theory
6:00pm Modern Family
6:30pm Big Bang Theory
7:00pm Masterchef (Season Finale)
9:00pm FOX 47 News at 9
9:35pm Modern Family
10:05pm Two and a Half Men
10:35pm Everybody Loves Raymond
11:05pm The Simpsons
11:35pm The Simpsons