New statin guidelines will help to save lives

18 July 2014        

Pack of statins/cholesterol/hypercholestemia tablets

Doctors will be able to offer cholesterol lowering medicines to more people at risk of heart disease under new guidelines published by NICE.

Previously, cholesterol lowering medications such as statins, were offered to people who had a 20 per cent or greater risk of a heart attack in the next 10 years. However, after considering all the evidence on the safety and effectiveness of statins and their reduced cost, NICE has revised its guidelines to enable doctors to offer the medication to people at a 10 per cent risk in the next 10 years.

Our Medical Director, Professor Peter Weissberg, said: “Too many people die from cardiovascular disease, and these new guidelines are part of continuing efforts to prevent heart attacks and strokes.

“Doctors will now be able to offer a statin to people at a lower risk, but their prescription is not mandated. Just as important is the emphasis on trying lifestyle changes before considering treatments with drugs.

“Crucially, the guidelines emphasise that preventive strategies should be based on each individual’s risk and needs with a personalised game-plan to help reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease.”