Cholesterol and cardiovascular disease risk
Recent public debate—sparked by the ABC Catalyst program—on whether management of cardiovascular risk places undue emphasis on blood cholesterol has raised questions about current prescribing practices for lipid lowering medicines and the role of statins in the prevention of cardiovascular events.
From the perspective of NPS MedicineWise the guidelines are clear and the evidence is strong — statins remain one of the most effective strategies for reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, but patient selection is key.
The prescribing of statins should follow national guidelines based on absolute CVD risk assessment. In people who are deemed moderate to high risk, statins have an important, clinically proven role to play in the prevention of CVD.
For up to date information on the use of statins refer to the following NPS MedicineWise resources:
- Statins and cardiovascular disease - frequently asked questions (for patients)
- Statins revisited: appropriate patient selection is key
- Consultation snapshot — using statins in an older patient
- How to assess absolute cardiovascular risk
- Lipid assessment
- Benefits and risks of statin use in older people
- Clinical e-Audit: CVD risk assessment and lipid-modifying therapy