- Assess absolute cardiovascular risk, using an appropriate risk calculator, before prescribing lipid-modifying medicines
- Prescribe lipid-modifying medicines for patients with high cardiovascular risk
- Optimise LDL lowering by adequately trialling statin therapy before adding a second lipid-modifying medicine
- Recognise that statin intolerance is rarely life-threatening and may have a lower incidence than is commonly reported
- Systematically assess and manage suspected statin-associated muscle symptoms (SAMS)
Video - NPS Briefing: everything you need to know about statin intolerance
Spend 12 minutes with NPS MedicineWise's Natalie Raffoul for a briefing on the controversial topic of statin intolerance - get the latest evidence and learn about the new NPS statin associated muscle symptom treatment algorithm.
Practice review – Managing lipids: statins revisited
Australian GPs recently received a Practice Review on their prescribing of statins and ezetimibe in practice.
- Find out more about how to interpret your graphs and tables
- Reflect on your practice and prescription patterns of statins and ezetimibe
- Review and download a sample report
Can co-enzyme Q10 supplementation prevent or treat statin-associated muscle symptoms?
Evidence supporting the use of CoQ10 supplements to prevent or treat SAMs in clinical practice is inconsistent.
Review the evidence, and read our expert's opinion about the use of CoQ10 supplementation in cases of SAMs.
Medicinewise News: Uncovering the truth about statin intolerance
Muscle symptoms are the most commonly reported form of statin intolerance, but are they as common as patients and doctors think? A systematic approach to assessing and managing muscle complaints among patients taking statins may improve both adherence to statins, and patient CV outcomes.
Statins revisited – appropriate patient selection and management are key
The use of statins in primary care remains suboptimal, with evidence suggesting these medicines are being prescribed for patients with elevated cholesterol but low absolute CV risk, and underused by patients with high CV risk. This means that some patients are unnecessarily treated and patients who would benefit from lipid-modifying medicines may not be receiving necessary treatment.
Statins: benefits still outweigh perceived risks
Statins remain a foundation of lipid management due to their well-established efficacy at preventing vascular events.1-4 Despite this proven efficacy and safety, use of statins in clinical practice, and adherence to these medicines by patients, is not optimal.
The Statins: optimising therapy, addressing intolerance program emphasises the importance of using an absolute cardiovascular (CV) risk approach to guide treatment decisions and the appropriate use of statin therapy. This program also looks at the current evidence around the true incidence of statin-associated muscle symptoms (SAMS), and provides tools and strategies to help health professionals effectively assess and manage SAMS.
NPS MedicineWise has collaborated with external clinical experts to develop practical resources for health professionals to use with patients with suspected muscle symptoms, including a SAMS assessment guide, a SAMS management algorithm, Statin FAQs for patients and a Statins Patient Action Plan for assessing and managing muscle symptoms.
See the Resources tab in this page for more information.
Australian Prescriber: Encouraging adherence to long‑term medication
Aust Prescr 2017;40:147-501
Patients should be asked about adherence at every consultation.
Learn more about:
- using a collaborative communication style
- using the patient’s own expressions and responding to their cues
- how to normalise non-adherence
- using open questions and more specific probes.
- Cholesterol Treatment Trialists' Collaborators. The effects of lowering LDL cholesterol with statin therapy in people at low risk of vascular disease: meta-analysis of individual data from 27 randomised trials. Lancet 2012;380:581-90
- Collins R, Reith C, Emberson J, et al. Interpretation of the evidence for the efficacy and safety of statin therapy. Lancet 2016;388:2532–2561
- Sattar N, Preiss D, Murray HM, et al. Statins and risk of incident diabetes: a collaborative meta-analysis of randomised statin trials. Lancet 2010;375:735-42
- Taylor F, Huffman MD, Macedo AF, et al. Statins for the primary prevention of cardiovascular disease. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2013:Cd004816