About 70 million Americans Could Take Statins Under New Guidelines

The number of Americans taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs is set to double under new guidelines.

The number of Americans taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs is set to double under new guidelines unveiled Tuesday by the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Assn.

The goal of prescribing statins to as many as 70 million people is to reduce the incidence of heart attacks and strokes in the United States, not merely to get patient’s LDL cholesterol — the “bad” kind that’s most closely linked to disease risk – into an ideal range, experts said.

The new game plan for statins represents a stark shift from approaches embraced by cardiologists and primary care physicians for most of the past decade. Now, doctors will be urged to treat a wider range of healthier patients, including those likely to suffer stroke or heart disease as they age.

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Source: The Los Angeles Times