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Comparison of statins for primary prevention of cardiovascular disease and persistent physical disability in older adults

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-21, 03:35 authored by Zhen ZhouZhen Zhou, Curtis, AJ, Ernst, ME, Ryan, J, Zoungas, S, Wolfe, R, McNeil, JJ, Murray, AM, Reid, CM, Chowdhury, EK, Woods, RL, Tonkin, AM, Mark NelsonMark Nelson

Purpose: Recent epidemiological evidence has suggested that use of lipid-lowering medications, particularly statins, was associated with reduced cardiovascular disease (CVD) events and persistent physical disability in healthy older adults. However, the comparative efficacy of different statins in this group remains unclear. This study aimed to compare different forms of statins in their associations with CVD and physical disability in healthy older adults.

Methods: This post hoc analysis included data from 5981 participants aged ≥ 70 years (≥ 65 if US minorities; median age:74.0) followed for a median of 4.7 years, who had no prior CVD events or physical disability and reported using a statin at baseline. The incidence of the composite and components of major adverse cardiovascular events and persistent physical disability were compared across different statins according to their type, potency, and lipophilicity using multivariable Cox proportional-hazards models.

Results: Atorvastatin was the most used statin type at baseline (37.9%), followed by simvastatin (29.6%), rosuvastatin (25.5%), and other statins (7.0%, predominantly pravastatin). In comparisons of specific statins according to type and lipophilicity (lipophilic vs. hydrophilic statin), observed differences in all outcomes were small and not statistically significant (all p values > 0.05). High-potency statin use (atorvastatin and rosuvastatin) was marginally associated with lower risk of fatal CVD events compared with low-/moderate-potency statin use (hazard ratio: 0.59; 95% confidence interval: 0.35, 1.00).

Conclusion: There were minimal differences in CVD outcomes and no significant difference in persistent physical disability between various forms of statins in healthy older adults. Future investigations are needed to confirm our results.


Publication title

European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology

Article number

online ahead of print


online ahead of print




Menzies Institute for Medical Research



Place of publication

175 Fifth Ave, New York, USA, Ny, 10010

Rights statement

© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2021

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Efficacy of medications

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