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Do Cholesterol Medications Cause Diabetes

If Statins Cause Diabetes, Why Should All Diabetics Take A Statin?

If Statins Cause Diabetes, Why Should All Diabetics Take A Statin?

The guidelines from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology are crystal clear. People with diabetes (both type-1 and type-2) should all be on a statin-type cholesterol-lowering medicine! There are no exceptions to this recommendation. Any physician who strays from the path of prescribing a statin to his or her diabetic patients will presumably be practicing bad medicine. What makes this guideline so intriguing is the growing body of evidence suggesting that statins cause diabetes in a substantial number of people. So, the very drug that induces elevated blood sugars is required to treat the cardiovascular risks associated with the development of drug-induced type-2 diabetes. Does this seem as odd to you as it does to us? Do Statins Cause Diabetes? Do you doubt that statins cause* diabetes? Here is just the latest research on this connection (Dormuth et al, BMJ, online, May 29, 2014). Researchers analyzed data on nearly 140,000 patients in Canada, the UK and the U.S. All the individuals had been hospitalized either because of a heart attack, stent placement or some other serious cardiovascular procedure. Some were given low-potency statins while others were placed on high-potency statins such as rosuvastatin (Crestor) at a dose of 10 mg or greater, atorvastatin (Lipitor) at a dose of 20 mg or higher or simvastatin (Zocor) at a dose of 40 mg or higher. None of the people in the analysis had been diagnosed or treated for diabetes prior to being placed on a statin. Within two years of starting on the medicine 3,629 patients were diagnosed with type-2 diabetes. Those given high-potency statins were 15% more likely to end up with blood sugar elevations compared to patients prescribed lower-potency statins or lower doses. The lead author, Colin Do Continue reading >>

Study Uncovers Why Statins Increase Diabetes Risk And Offers Solution

Study Uncovers Why Statins Increase Diabetes Risk And Offers Solution

Statins are drugs that lower cholesterol in the body by interfering with the production of cholesterol in the liver. Though they lower bad cholesterol and raise good cholesterol, one side effect is that they increase risk of diabetes. Now, researchers have discovered why and offer a way to suppress this side effect. One of the world's most widely used drugs, statins have been hailed by the medical community for their ability to prevent heart disease. Still, the researchers, who have published their findings in the journal Diabetes, were confused as to why diabetes was linked to statin use. "Recently, an increased risk of diabetes has been added to the warning label for statin use," says lead author Jonathan Schertzer, assistant professor of Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences, and Canadian Diabetes Association Scholar. "This was perplexing to us," he continues, "because if you are improving your metabolic profile with statins you should actually be decreasing the incidence of diabetes with these drugs, yet, the opposite happened." According to the team, around 13 million people could be prescribed a statin drug at some point in their lives. In January of this year, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a Consumer Update outlining some of the risks associated with taking statins, which included an increased risk of raised blood sugar levels and the development of type 2 diabetes. At that time, Dr. Amy G. Egan, deputy director for safety in the FDA's Division of Metabolism and Endocrinology Products, said: Clearly we think that the heart benefits of statins outweighs this small increased risk. But what this means for patients taking statins and the health care professionals prescribing them is that blood-sugar levels may need to be assessed after instituting st Continue reading >>

Atorvastatin Lowers Cholesterol But Raises Blood Sugar

Atorvastatin Lowers Cholesterol But Raises Blood Sugar

As many as 40 million people may be taking statin-type cholesterol-lowering drugs daily in the U.S. Although medications like atorvastatin, lovastatin, simvastatin, pravastatin, and rosuvastatin can bring cholesterol levels down dramatically they can also raise blood glucose levels or make diabetes harder to control as this reader relates: Q. I used to have good blood sugar readings when I was on glyburide. Since I was put on atorvastatin to lower cholesterol I have had trouble with high blood sugar. I read in your Guide to Managing Diabetes that statins can affect blood glucose but the clinical pharmacist at the VA said you are wrong. She insisted that atorvastatin does not affect HbA1c or blood sugar. They now have me on both glipizide and Onglyza and the clinical pharmacist admitted that my HbA1c will not come down. She still insists I have to keep taking these medicines even if they are not working to control my diabetes. A. We are puzzled that your pharmacist was not aware of the official prescribing information for atorvastatin (Lipitor): “Increases in HbA1c and fasting serum glucose levels have been reported with HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors [statins], including LIPITOR.” HbA1c is a measure of how high blood sugar levels have been over the past three months. Clinical trials and other studies have shown that statins can indeed raise blood sugar levels, making it harder to control diabetes. Blood Sugar and Statins: There is general agreement that statin therapy increases the risk of developing diabetes (Current Atherosclerosis Reports, Jan. 2015). Research has shown that there is a 10 to 12 percent increased incidence of new-onset type 2 diabetes in statin takers. The higher the dose and the more potent the statin the greater the risk. Investigators believe tha Continue reading >>

Does Lipitor Increase My Risk For Diabetes?

Does Lipitor Increase My Risk For Diabetes?

Lipitor (atorvastatin) is intended to treat and lower high cholesterol levels. By doing so, it can reduce a person’s risk of heart attack and stroke. Lipitor and other statins actually block low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol production in the liver. LDL is known as the “bad” type of cholesterol. People with high levels of LDL are at risk for stroke, heart attack, and other cardiovascular conditions. Statin medications also help your body reabsorb some of the LDL that is already present in your arteries. Millions of Americans rely on statin medications like Lipitor to regulate and treat high cholesterol. Statins: Uses, Side Effects, and More » As with any medication, Lipitor may cause side effects. Studies have shown a possible connection between Lipitor and serious side effects, such as type 2 diabetes. This risk for diabetes may be especially strong in women and postmenopausal women, according to a 2012 study in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Other side effects of Lipitor include: arthritis back pain chest pain fatigue loss of appetite infection insomnia diarrhea rash stomach pain nausea urinary tract infection painful urination difficulty urinating swelling in feet and ankles potential muscle damage memory loss or confusion increased blood sugar levels In 1996, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Lipitor for the purpose of lowering cholesterol. Following its release, scientists found that more people who are on statin therapy are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes compared to people who are not on statin therapy. In 2012, the FDA updated their guidelines for the popular statin drug class. They added to the warning information that a “small increased risk” of high blood sugar levels and type 2 diabetes has been reported in individual Continue reading >>

Drug Induced Diabetes

Drug Induced Diabetes

Tweet A number of medications have side effects which include the raising of blood glucose levels. Drug induced diabetes is when use of a specific medication has lead to the development of diabetes. In some cases the development of diabetes may be reversible if use of the medication is discontinued, but in other cases drug-induced diabetes may be permanent. Drug induced diabetes is a form of secondary diabetes, in other words diabetes that is a consequence of having another health condition. Which drugs can induce diabetes? A number of drugs have been linked with an increased risk development of type 2 diabetes. Corticosteroids Thiazide diuretics Beta-blockers Antipsychotics Is diabetes permanent? Diabetes may not be permanent but this can depend on other health factors. With some medications, blood glucose levels may return back to normal once the medication is stopped but, in some cases, the development of diabetes may be permanent. Managing drug induced diabetes If you need to continue taking the medication that has brought on diabetes, it may make your diabetes more difficult to control than would otherwise be the case. If you are able to stop the course of medication, you may find your blood glucose levels become slightly easier to manage. Following a healthy diet and meeting the recommended exercise guidelines will help to improve your chances of managing your blood glucose levels. Can drug induced diabetes be prevented? It may be possible to reduce the risk of developing diabetes by ensuring you to keep to a healthy lifestyle whilst you are on the medication. Being on smaller doses of the medication or shorter periods of time may help to reduce the likelihood of developing high blood sugar levels and diabetes. Doctors will usually try to put you on the smallest e Continue reading >>

Could Statins Raise Diabetes Risk?

Could Statins Raise Diabetes Risk?

HealthDay Reporter THURSDAY, May 23 (HealthDay News) -- Certain statins -- the widely used cholesterol-lowering drugs -- may increase your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, a new study suggests. The risk was greatest for patients taking atorvastatin (brand name Lipitor), rosuvastatin (Crestor) and simvastatin (Zocor), the study said. Focusing on almost 500,000 Ontario residents, researchers in Canada found that the overall odds of developing diabetes were low in patients prescribed statins. Still, people taking Lipitor had a 22 percent higher risk of new-onset diabetes, Crestor users had an 18 percent increased risk and people taking Zocor had a 10 percent increased risk, relative to those taking pravastatin (Pravachol), which appears to have a favorable effect on diabetes. Physicians should weigh the risks and benefits when prescribing these medications, the researchers said in the study, which was published online May 23 in the journal BMJ. This does not, however, mean that patients should stop taking their statins, the experts said. The study also showed only an association between statin use and higher risk of diabetes; it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship. "While this is an important study evaluating the relationship between statins and the risk of diabetes, the study has several flaws that make it difficult to generalize the results," said Dr. Dara Cohen, a professor of medicine in the department of endocrinology, diabetes and bone disease at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City. "There was no data regarding weight, ethnicity and family history -- all important risk factors for the development of diabetes." Cohen added that there was no information on the patients' cholesterol and blood sugar levels, and that higher-risk pa Continue reading >>

Can Cholesterol Drugs Cause Diabetes?

Can Cholesterol Drugs Cause Diabetes?

For every prescription drug that is developed and offers benefits to patients, there are those that also pose significant risks. Physicians must always weigh the benefits to risks in order to make informed decisions as to whether a particular medication should be used for treatment. Recent findings suggest statins, a class of prescription drug used to treat high cholesterol levels, increase the risk of developing diabetes. The data on the effectiveness of statins in preventing heart attacks and stroke is unclear. They do seem to provide some benefit in patients who have already experienced a previous cardiovascular episode and are very likely to experience another one. But there is cause for concern over the widespread use of statins in patients with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease and the potential for these patients to eventually develop another disease, diabetes. Ive said for years that statins are a blessing and a curse, because they do incredibly good things, but they can do bad things. The problem with a statin is this: You dont want to choose a statin to lower a cholesterol number. To me, thats bad medicine. Dr. Stephen Sinatra Elevated blood cholesterol levels, specifically LDL (what some call bad cholesterol), have been associated with an increased risk of heart attacks and stroke. By testing LDL levels in patients, particularly small, dense LDL and Lp(a), a fairly accurate prediction can be made of future cardiac events. [1] As more research has been gathered on the role of LDL levels and heart disease, national guidelines have called for optimal LDL cholesterol levels to be lowered. Statins have the ability to block a critical step in the formation of LDL cholesterol within the liver, hence, the overall level of LDL in the blood drops. Because of this Continue reading >>

What Statin Is Best For People With Diabetes?

What Statin Is Best For People With Diabetes?

If you have diabetes, you’re at a higher risk for heart disease and stroke. This makes it especially important to control other risk factors for cardiovascular problems, such as high cholesterol. Fortunately, there are medications called statins that are quite effective at lowering your low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or “bad” cholesterol. Which statin is most appropriate if you have diabetes? It depends on your overall cardiovascular risk, but the recommendations lean toward a moderate-intensity or high-intensity statin. There are several different types of statins. Some are more potent than others. They each work a little differently, but they all help lower cholesterol by interfering with a substance your body needs to make cholesterol in the liver. Statins have become some of the most widely prescribed medications in the world. They include atorvastatin (Lipitor), rosuvastatin (Crestor), as well as other generic and brand name versions. The optimal LDL level for most healthy people is between 70 and 100 mg/dL. If your LDL numbers exceed that range, your doctor should look at your overall heart disease and stroke risk to decide whether you should be placed on statins. Recent guidelines presented by the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association expanded the number of potential statin users. Doctors used to base their decision to prescribe a statin primarily on a person’s LDL score. Now, other risk factors are also considered. In general, statins are usually recommended for people who have: diagnosed cardiovascular disease an LDL cholesterol level of 190 mg/dL or higher diabetes and an LDL of 70 mg/dL or higher a 10-year heart attack risk of 7.5 percent or higher and an LDL of at least 100 mg/dL Statins and diabetes risk: What you need to Continue reading >>

Statins Linked To Raised Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Statins Linked To Raised Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

HealthDay Reporter WEDNESDAY, March 4, 2015 (HealthDay News) -- Cholesterol-lowering statin drugs may significantly increase a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes, a new study from Finland suggests. Researchers found that statins were associated with an almost 50 percent higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes, even after adjusting for other factors. Statins appear to increase the risk of type 2 diabetes in several ways, the researchers said. One is that the drugs can increase a person's insulin resistance, and the other is that the cholesterol-lowering drugs seem to impair the ability of the pancreas to secrete insulin, according to the report. Commenting on the study, Dr. Ronald Goldberg, director of the Lipid Disorder Clinic and associate director of the Diabetes Research Institute at the University of Miami, said the researchers "show evidence that statins increased insulin resistance, and that the people who developed diabetes appeared to have less ability to respond to the insulin resistance by making more insulin." The study authors noted, however, that their research only found an association between statin use and diabetes risk. And since the study was limited to white men, it's not clear if the findings would apply to women or other racial groups. More than 29 million people in the United States have diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association (ADA). Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body becomes resistant to insulin, a hormone needed to process the sugars found in foods. To compensate, the body produces more insulin. Excess weight and a sedentary lifestyle are two important risk factors for type 2 diabetes, according to the ADA. Prior studies have indicated that statins may increase a person's risk of diabetes, the authors said in backgro Continue reading >>

Statins Increase Diabetes Risk By Up To 50% In Older Women

Statins Increase Diabetes Risk By Up To 50% In Older Women

Statins Increase Diabetes Risk by up to 50% in Older Women Statin therapy increases the risk of new-onset diabetes in elderly women by 33%, and the higher the dose, the greater the risk, a new analysis of the observational Australian Longitudinal Study on Women's Health shows. "Clearly, statins have beneficial effects, including a reduction in the risk of cardiovascular events; however, the dose-response effect we observed suggests that it may be wise to avoid using higher doses of statins in older women," lead author Mark Jones, MD, senior lecturer, school of public health, the University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, told Medscape Medical News in an email. "GPs and their elderly female patients should be aware of the risks," Dr Jones added in a University of Queensland statement, noting that those elderly women taking statins "should be carefully and regularly monitored for increased blood glucose to ensure early detection and management of diabetes." And, he and his colleagues suggest, it may be the case that statins could be stopped altogether in some elderly women. Women Take Statins on Average, for 6.5 Years The new analysis included 8372 Australian women aged between 76 and 82 years at baseline who were followed for 10 years; it is published in the March issue of Drugs and Aging. Dr Jones and colleagues note that the majority of participants in statin trials have been males and that females, especially elderly ones, have been underrepresented. "Our group has expertise and experience in women's health, including being involved with the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women's Health for the past 20 years, and we focused on the older cohort of women [in this study] because we thought this is a population that has generally not been included in clinical tria Continue reading >>

Statins May Seriously Increase Diabetes Risk

Statins May Seriously Increase Diabetes Risk

TIME Health For more, visit TIME Health. Doctors may have to weigh a serious potential risk before prescribing statins, the cholesterol-lowering drugs that are among most prescribed drugs in America. In a study published in Diabetologia, scientists from Finland found that men prescribed statins to lower their cholesterol had a 46% greater chance of developing diabetes after six years compared to those who weren’t taking the drug. What’s more, the statins seemed to make people more resistant to the effects of insulin—which breaks down sugar—and to secrete less insulin. The impact on insulin seemed to be greatest among those who started out with the lowest, and closest to normal, levels of blood glucose. And the higher the dose of the statin, and the longer the patients took them, the greater their risk of diabetes. Previous studies have suggested that statins can raise blood sugar levels, and increase the risk of diabetes by anywhere from 10% to 20%, but none have documented an effect this large. Doctors often consider statins for patients who are at higher risk of heart disease, and one of the risk factors for future heart trouble is diabetes. So how do these results affect that decision? “It’s a good news-bad news scenario,” says Dr. Robert Eckel, past president of the American Heart Association and professor of medicine at University of Colorado School of Medicine. “Although there is convincing evidence that patients on statins are at increased risk of new-onset diabetes, the benefit accrued [from statins] in reducing risks of heart attack, stroke and fatal heart disease trumps the effects of being new onset diabetics.” In other words, the good that statins can do for people who are not yet diabetic but at higher risk of heart problems outweighs the Continue reading >>

Statin Side Effects: Weigh The Benefits And Risks

Statin Side Effects: Weigh The Benefits And Risks

Statin side effects can be uncomfortable, making it seem like the risks outweigh the benefits of these powerful cholesterol-lowering medications. Doctors often prescribe statins for people with high cholesterol to lower their total cholesterol and reduce their risk of a heart attack or stroke. While statins are highly effective, they have been linked to muscle pain, digestive problems and mental fuzziness in some people and may rarely cause liver damage. Statins include atorvastatin (Lipitor), fluvastatin (Lescol), lovastatin (Altoprev), pitavastatin (Livalo), pravastatin (Pravachol), rosuvastatin (Crestor) and simvastatin (Zocor). Having too much cholesterol in your blood increases your risk of heart attacks and strokes. Statins block a substance your liver needs to make cholesterol. This causes your liver to remove cholesterol from your blood. If you think you're experiencing side effects from statins, don't just stop taking the pills. Talk to your doctor to see if a change of dosage or even a different type of medication might be helpful. What are statin side effects? Muscle pain and damage One of the most common complaints of people taking statins is muscle pain. You may feel this pain as a soreness, tiredness or weakness in your muscles. The pain can be a mild discomfort, or it can be severe enough to make your daily activities difficult. Oddly enough, most randomized controlled studies of statins indicate that people taking statins develop muscle pain at the same rate as people taking placebo. But up to 29 percent of the people who start taking statins report muscle pain and many discontinue statins because of it. Many of these people do well when they are switched to a different variety of statin. Very rarely, statins can cause life-threatening muscle damage call Continue reading >>

Cholesterol-lowering Drugs May Be Linked To Diabetes

Cholesterol-lowering Drugs May Be Linked To Diabetes

You may have concerns about taking a cholesterol-lowering statin drug, such as atorvastatin (Lipitor and generic), rosuvastatin (Crestor), and simvastatin (Zocor and generic), after a recent study linked those drugs to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes. But Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs experts say the heart-protective benefit of statins usually outweighs the risk of diabetes, so don’t skip a statin if you need one to lower your cholesterol. Diabetes isn’t a new side effect of statins. The Food and Drug Administration added it to the label of all statins in 2012 based on a review of studies that found a slightly elevated risk. For example, one study that reviewed 13 randomized, controlled clinical trials of statins found that 4.9 percent of people who took one of the drugs for 4 years developed diabetes compared with 4.5 percent of those who didn’t take a statin. Lower Cholesterol vs. Higher Blood Glucose The new study, published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, raises questions about whether the diabetes risk is higher than previously thought. Researchers looked at medical data of nearly 7,000 men and women with an average age of 53. About 31 percent of those who took a statin for an average of 5.5 years developed diabetes compared with 19 percent of those who didn’t. But since the study was not a randomized, controlled study—the gold standard for determining whether a drug causes a particular side effect—it’s not known for sure that the increase in diabetes was entirely due to statins. The study participants might have had other factors that contributed to the development of diabetes. "All we can say," says Ishak Mansi, M.D., an internist at the Veteran's Hospital in North Texas and co-author of the study, "[is] that in the healthy popul Continue reading >>

Statin Use And Risk Of Diabetes Mellitus

Statin Use And Risk Of Diabetes Mellitus

Go to: STATINS IN DIABETES Statins are used for primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular diseases. Other benefits due to statins are not mediated by their lipid lowering properties[8] but due to its pleiotropic effects. In conditions like heart failure, cardiac arrhythmias, vascular disease and hypertension the non-lipid lowering pleotropic benefits of statins have been observed[9]. These pleiotropic effects mediated by statins can be due to inhibition of isoprenoid synthesis which in turn inhibits intracellular signaling molecules Rho, Rac and Cdc42. The predominant mechanism that has been postulated is inhibition of Rho and its activation to Rho kinase[10]. Type 2 diabetes is characterized by hyperglycemia, insulin resistance and insulin deficiency. The insulin resistance contributes to the abnormal lipid profile associated with type 2 diabetes[11]. Dyslipidemia contributes to increased cardiovascular events in patients with type 2 diabetes[12]. A linear relationship exists between cholesterol levels and cardiovascular diseases in diabetics even if we ignore the baseline LDL[13]. By predominantly lowering LDL-Cholesterol and due to minor effects on other lipoproteins, statins appear to be beneficial[12]. In Heart Protection Study which was done in diabetics, the decrease in cardiovascular events like first major coronary event, stroke were to the tune of 22% as compared to placebo[14]. It was recommended by American Diabetes Association that statin therapy should be initiated in individuals with diabetes and other cardiovascular risk factors with target LDL cholesterol of 100 mg/dL[15]. Investigators are also of the opinion that statin therapy should depend not on the LDL levels but the cardiovascular complications accompanying diabetes[16]. Other studies wh Continue reading >>

Statins Increase The Risk Of Developing Diabetes In At-risk People

Statins Increase The Risk Of Developing Diabetes In At-risk People

Among susceptible individuals, statins — which are a common cholesterol-lowering medication — could increase the risk of type 2 diabetes by 30 percent. These new findings are sure to reignite debate. Statins lower cholesterol by reducing its production in the liver. They do this by blocking an enzyme called hydroxy-methyl-glutaryl-coenzyme A reductase, which is involved in its manufacture. Statins are one of the most widely prescribed types of drug in the United States. Between 2011 and 2012, over a quarter of U.S. adults over the age of 40 were taking cholesterol-lowering medication. The vast majority of these drugs were statins. Alongside their cholesterol-lowering ability, statins also have positive effects on inflammation and oxidative stress. Taken together, it would be unsurprising if statins helped to reduce the risk of developing diabetes. But the reverse may well be true. Evidence is mounting that long-term statin use could increase the risk of type 2 diabetes. The first study to mention this potential effect was published in 2008. Between then and now, many meta-analyses have been carried out. Some have added evidence supporting a link between statin use and type 2 diabetes, while others have brought such a link into question. Therefore, a definitive answer is yet to be found. Reopening the statin-diabetes debate Many previous studies that pointed out a link did not specifically set out to investigate diabetes and statins; their prime focus was on cardiovascular events. Because the number of diabetes cases within the experimental groups was low, it was difficult to get a good understanding of the associated risks. So, to take a fresh look at this interaction, researchers from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City, NY, decided to focus th Continue reading >>

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