New research suggests statins can reduce heart attack severity

19 September 2016        

A picture of statins being taken out of the packet

Researchers from Peking University Health Science Centre, Beijing, China, have published a new study suggesting that some medications which are prescribed to prevent heart attacks may also reduce heart attack severity.

The observational study of nearly 15,000 patients in China showed that the benefits of these medications, including statins and aspirin, may extend beyond preventing acute cardio syndrome.

Acute cardio syndrome is an umbrella term which refers to a group of conditions in which the blood supply to the heart becomes restricted or blocked – such as angina and heart attacks

BHF response to the research

Dr Mike Knapton, Associate Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation, said:

“We already know that drugs such as statins and aspirin are effective in reducing the risk of developing conditions that restrict vital blood flow to the heart, such as heart attacks and unstable angina. What this large study suggests is that these drugs could actually go one step further, and reduce the severity of a heart attack, and the development of arrhythmias and other major cardiovascular events in the future. 

“If you have had a heart attack you’re automatically at greater risk of having another so it is extremely encouraging that this evidence suggests these commonly prescribed medicines can also reduce the severity of any subsequent heart attack. The findings reiterate the importance of people taking their prescribed medication.”

learn more about heart attacks