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Medicine

Doctors: cholesterol medicines could be dangerous

Published tisdag 26 april 2011 kl 10.30
Photo: Jan-Erik Henriksson/Scanpix

About half a million Swedes regularly take medicine to lower their cholesterol levels but scientists and doctors now warn that these medicines don’t have the desired effects, especially not for those who take the pills as a preventative measure.

Many Swedes take the medicines, also known as statins, as a preventative measure but in an opinion piece, published by newspaper Dagens Nyheter, a group of scientists and doctors instead claim that taking the medicines unnecessarily could lead to severe side effects.

Several studies show that these medicines are only beneficial for men who have already suffered from a heart attack.

“When it comes to preventing cardiovascular disease the positive effects have not been established,” said professor Tore Schersten.

But, he adds, those who take the medicine regularly can still get the side effects, such as cancer.

“There are no scientific studies that women might benefit from taking statins. But today women eat as much of it as men,” Schersten told Swedish Radio News.

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