Pro-Statin Mainstreamer Dismisses The Link Between Statins And Memory Loss

| July 2, 2015

A recent study, published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine, compared new cholesterol-lowering statin drug users with people taking non-statin cholesterol drugs, and those taking no drugs at all. The results showed patients taking statins reported memory loss and memory problems within as little as 30-days from starting their medication, compared to non-users.

Yet, despite this clear link between memory loss and statin drugs (also shown by numerous other studies), lead researcher Dr Brian Strom said: “People who have high cholesterol should be on statins. This is a very effective therapy, which is very safe. People shouldn’t steer away from the drug because of false fear of memory problems.”

Seriously?

Yes, statins might be an effective therapy because these drugs do indeed lower your cholesterol… So, it does what it says on the label.

But safe? That’s a blatant lie. Especially when it comes to the well-established neurological damage associated with statin drugs, resulting in memory loss, depression and even suicidal behaviour.

Dr. Strom added that the reason why statin drug patients are more aware of memory problems is because the problem had already existed before they started taking these drugs. He said: “Even if it has nothing to do with the drug, they’re going to blame it on the drug.” He calls this ‘detection bias’.

Now if that is not one of the most arrogant dismissals of patient concerns and a drug’s side effects, I don’t know what is. Apart from the fact that it is also clearly yet another attempt to coax people into taking these drugs by telling them that statin drugs are ‘safe’.

Below is just some of the research that has already shown how statin drugs can have a detrimental effect on brain function:

  • Research into 171 individuals who complained of statin-related brain symptoms found that 90 per cent of people who stopped statins experienced an improvement in their symptoms. Sometimes, improvement was seen within days of stopping the treatment. The average time it took for improvement to be seen was about 2 and a half weeks. The fact that symptoms improved after stopping statins strongly suggests that statins were directly responsible for the problems experienced.
  • Other research looked into the adverse effects statin drugs can have on people whose brain function is already impaired. The results showed that elderly patients with Alzheimer’s disease, who had stopped taking statin drugs for six weeks, had improved brain function within days. When the drugs were restarted, their brain function got worse again.
  • In his book, ‘Lipitor: thief of memory and The Statin Damage Crisis‘, Dr Duane Graveline tells how he started to experience transient global amnesia (TGA) after Lipitor (the most popular statin drug) was prescribed to him to lower his cholesterol. TGA is the sudden inability to formulate new memories (known as anterograde amnesia), combined with varying degrees of retrograde memory loss — sometimes for decades into the past. According to Dr. Graveline, TGA is but the tip of the iceberg of the many other forms of statin-associated memory lapses reported from distraught people. Far more common are symptoms of disorientation, confusion and unusual forgetfulness. These lesser forms of memory impairment can be easily missed in many individuals.

Animal studies have shown similar memory-destroying effects of statin drugs. In one study, rats were treated for 18 days with statins. Before, during and after treatment, the rats were subjected to a learning test and a memory task. The results showed that statin drugs adversely affected the rats’ ability to perform both the learning and memory tests. These adverse effects were ‘reversible’ (resolved once the rats were taken off the drug).

In another study, researchers used guinea pigs to test the effects of statin drugs on the ‘long-term potentiation’ in a part of the brain known as the hippocampus. The hippocampus is believed to be the major seat in the brain of learning and memory. Improved long-term potentiation in the hippocampus is a sign of improved learning and memory functioning. The results showed that statin drugs reduced long-term potentiation.

The guinea pigs were also exposed to a ‘water maze test’, which is often used in animal experiments to test learning and memory (particularly ‘spatial’ learning and memory). Statin therapy was found to significantly reduce what is termed as ‘working memory’ – a form of ‘short-term memory’ that allows individuals to hold multiple pieces of information in their mind at the same time for a short period of time.

So there you have it, the link between statin drugs and memory loss (as well as impaired brain function) is well established… The only thing is, pro-statin mainstreamers like Dr. Strom will do and say anything to convince patients otherwise.

Don’t fall for it, because apart from memory loss and brain dysfunction, these drugs have also been linked to type 2 diabetes, kidney failure, liver dysfunction, muscle pain and muscled loss (myopathy), depression, macular degeneration, cataracts and chronic fatigue… to mention but a few.

Safe? I don’t think so.

Here's to keeping your heart strong and healthy

Francois Lubbe
Editor
for The Cholesterol Truth



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Bear in mind we are not addressing anyone’s personal situation and you should rely on this for informational purposes only. Please consult with your own physician before acting on any recommendations contained herein.


Sources:

Cholesterol-lowing statins DON’T cause memory loss, landmark report declares, published online 08.06.15, dailymail.co.uk

Evans MA, et al. Statin-associated adverse cognitive effects: survey results from 171 patients. Pharmacotherapy. 2009;29(7):800-11

Padala KP. Et al. The effect of HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors on cognition in patients with Alzheimer’s dementia: a prospective withdrawal and rechallenge pilot study. Am J Geriatr Pharmacother. 2012;10(5):296-302

Lipitor: thief of memory and The Statin Damage Crisis – Statin drugs and the misguided war on cholesterol, by Dr Duane Graveline, published in November 2006, ISBN: 9781424301621

Stuart SA, et al. Chronic Pravastatin but Not Atorvastatin Treatment Impairs Cognitive Function in Two Rodent Models of Learning and Memory. PLoS ONE 8(9): e75467

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Category: Statin Controversy

Comments (2)

Testimonials are based on the personal experience of individuals. Results are not typical and the potential benefits of taking any drug or supplement may vary depending on your individual needs and health requirements. Please consult your GP before making any changes to your medical regimen.

  1. Chris SNUGGS says:

    The point is, can you reduce cholesterol WITHOUT statins? I am eating only oily fish, fruit, vegetables, salad with olive oil, nuts and natural or low-fat yogurt: no fried food, no tinned foods, no processed foods, no biscuits, cakes, crisps etc and no meat except for some lean chicken once a week. IS THIS ENOUGH to make do without statins?

    • Editor says:

      Hi Chris,

      The question is: Why do you want to reduce your cholesterol? Because your doctor told you to do so? Or because you know there is a real threat to your health if you don’t lower your cholesterol? This blog is filled with information based on reputable sources (see sources listed underneath each post) that shows a strong argument against the mainstream’s belief that cholesterol puts your health in danger.

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