Statins should be used more now they are cheaper

Statins should be used more now they are cheaper

More people could be prescribed statins to prevent their risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in new proposals by NICE. And they could be used more widely according to their new guidelines.

At the moment statins are prescribed for those who have a 20% risk of CVD in the next 10 years. But NICE are recommending that this threshold is lowered to a 10% risk.

This recommendation is part of draft guidelines which NICE will now publically consult on.

Professor Peter Weissberg, Medical Director at the British Heart Foundation, said: “Reducing your cholesterol level, whether that’s through medication or lifestyle changes, will reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease.

“The current guidance weighed the benefits of taking a statin against what was then the considerable cost to the health service. This pragmatic decision made sure that those of highest risk benefitted.

“However, as most people who have a heart attack or stroke have average cholesterol levels and since statins are now much cheaper it makes sense to reconsider the threshold.”

To find out more visit British Heart Foundation