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Thursday, 2 March 2017

Statin drugs are safe! No, they are unsafe! Does Medical Science know?

Are Statin drugs safe?

Patients are given drugs by their doctors because they are told by medical science that the drugs are safe. Experience, particularly over the last 70 years, but actually over the last 200 years, has demonstrated that medical science has got it wrong, most of the time.

So what about Statin drugs? Are the safe? Let's look at what medical science is telling us about drugs that vast numbers of people (6 million in the UK alone) are now taking to lower cholesterol levels, and prevent heart disease. In particular, let's look at two articles published recently by 'The Telegraph' newspaper.

"A third of adults should take statins, new research suggests", is the headline to its article dated 8th September 2016. This takes the line patients have been given for the last 30 years and more.

               "The number of people taking statins should double, according to the author of a landmark report which has found that the drug's side effects have been exaggerated and the treatment prevents 80,000 heart attacks a year. The study, which looked at 30 years of evidence, today declares the cholesterol-reducing drug safe and says that the reported side effects have "inappropriately dissuaded" people from taking them."

In the article, Professor Rory Collins stated that the review showed “the numbers of people who avoid heart attacks and strokes by taking statin therapy are very much larger than the numbers who have side-effects with it”. He went on to talk about the "misleading claims" about the side effects "that inappropriately dissuade people from taking statin therapy despite the proven benefits.” The study estimated that the drugs helped to prevent 80,000 major cardiovascular events, such as heart attacks or strokes, every year.

On 25th November 2016, The Telegraph published another article, "Lancet study on statins was 'fundamentally flawed', critics say". It said that a group of doctors, including Harvard statin expert Dr John Abramson, Sir Richard Thompson, former president of the Royal College of Physicians, and Professor Sherif Sultan, president of the International Society for Vascular Surgery. had attacked the Lancet study on the basis that some of the data behind the trials had not been published, while some claims about the impact of the drugs on cholesterol were based on forecasts. The lead author, Dr Aseem Malhotra is quoted as saying:

               “Decades of misinformation on cholesterol and the gross exaggeration of statin benefits with downplaying of side effects has likely led to the overmedication of millions of people across the world.  The lack of transparency in the prescription of statins is just one symptom of a broken system of healthcare where finance based medicine has trumped independent evidence and what is most important for patients.”

The same Telegraph article then outlined the response to Mahotra's findings! It stated that Professor Sir Nilesh Samani, medical director at the British Heart Foundation, said:

               “This paper combines data and opinion that risks confusing patients about the benefits and safety of their statins.

Yes, patients have every right to be confused, who have to decide whether to take them or not. So, too, do doctors, who have to decide whether to prescribe them, or not!

Medical science is giving no guidance. If 'science' is meant to be definitive, if the randomised controlled tests (RCT's), much beloved by the conventional medical establishment is supposed to provide certainty, it has completely failed. Indeed, medical science has always failed - it approved pharmaceutical drugs as safe and effective. Then, decades later, discovers that they are neither safe nor effective.

My position on Statins has not changed, and it has been outlined elsewhere. The side effects of Statin drugs make them unacceptable, something all patients should avoid at all costs.

               Statin Drugs. Now doctors, are they still 'entirely safe'?
               Statin Drugs (in 'Why Homeopathy?')
               Statins. From 'wonder' drug to 'killer' drug?

Yet the point of this blog is not that the risks of Statins make them too toxic to be acceptable, but is that medical science itself cannot agree about just how dangerous they are to our health!

Proponents of conventional medicine always claim that what they do is based on science, that their drug and vaccine have an 'evidence base'. But whose science? On what evidence base? The two Telegraph articles highlights the confusion that applies not just to Statin drugs, but to every other pharmaceutical drug and vaccine. Medical scientists do not agree about how safe they are, or how dangerous they are.

The only certainty is that the conventional medical establishment will continue to prescribe the drugs and vaccines to us. They may be largely ineffective. They may be dangerous. But patients will continue to be given them until such time as it is conclusively proven that they are ineffective and dangerous. Many patients will contract the 'side effects' that are really diseases. Many patients will die.

The precautionary principle is not applied to pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines. Patients are expected to continue taking them regardless of the diseases and the deaths they might cause. Only when 'medical science' is completely convinced will it act to safeguard patients.