WMSN FOX 47
 

FOX 47 - Health News

MADISON (WMSN) -- Cholesterol drugs, also known as statins, are credited with saving thousands of lives every year.



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.

Doctors debate cholesterol meds for healthy people

Video List

Sun. - Fri. on FOX 47 News at 9!

Top Health Headlines (foxnews.com)

5 things you should know about water (but probably don't)

Whatever the latest food trend—chia seeds, coconut flour, kale chips—you're on it. But you might be skimping on the most basic thing you can do for your health: chugging enough water.


Best foods to ease Crohn's disease symptoms

If you have Crohn’s disease, you want to avoid flare-ups at all costs. Although diet can’t cure it, avoiding or making smart food choices can help ease your symptoms.


Will eating certain foods make me more attractive?

Today, I received a question from a man who wanted to know if he could eat his way to attractiveness.  Here's my answer


Parkinson's disease could enhance creativity
People with Parkinson's disease may have higher levels of creativity than their healthy peers, a new study finds

Is your child's breakfast cereal doing more harm than good?

Could giving our kids fortified cereals for breakfast be doing more harm than good?


Advertise with us!

Tonight on FOX 47

12:00pm Ring of Honor Wrestling
1:00pm Big Bang Theory
1:30pm
Two and a Half Men
2
:00pm
Modern Family
2:30pm
Modern Family
3
:00pm Guinness International Championship Cup: "Manchester United vs. AS Roma"
5:00pm FOX UFC Saturday Prelims
7:00pm UFC on FOX Saturday
9:00pm FOX 47 News at 9
9:30pm Inside the Huddle Training Camp Special
10:00pm Animation Domination
11:00pm Ring of Honor Wrestling
12:00am
The Arsenio Hall Show


Complete FOX 47 Schedule

To FOX.com

Advertise with us!
IE6 Float Fix