Coronary artery calcification has been found to be associated with cardiovascular events. In other words, there are more cardiovascular events when there is a higher coronary artery calcification score. The coronary calcium score can be measured with a coronary CT scan or a coronary intravascular ultrasound scan. Coronary scans are frequently ordered by cardiologists and primary care physicians. If the coronary calcium score on the CT is elevated, the doctor is most likely to prescribe a statin medication. You might think that a statin medication, if it was effective at treating and preventing heart disease, would be shown to decrease coronary calcium burden. Well, you would think wrong. Statin drugs are the most profitable drugs in the history of Big Pharma. Presently, over 28% of all U.S. adults take a statin drug. Statins are prescribed by doctors to treat high cholesterol levels and heart disease. Furthermore, the Powers-That-Be proclaim that statins will prevent a healthy person from getting heart disease. Remember, just because the Powers-That-Be continue to make the above statements does not make them true.
The British Medical Journal has published a new meta-analysis looking at randomised controlled trials (RCTs) that were available to US and UK regulatory committees that adopted low-fat dietary guidelines in the 1970s and 1980s to supposedly reduce coronary heart disease (CHD). The authors of the study state that to date, no analysis of the evidence base for recommending a low-fat diet to reduce heart disease has ever been studied. So the authors conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of the RCTs that were published prior to 1983, which examined the relationship between dietary fat, serum cholesterol and the development of coronary heart disease. After analyzing multiple studies that included 2467 males, the authors found "no differences in all-cause mortality and non-significant differences in CHD mortality, resulting from the dietary interventions." They therefore concluded that: "Dietary recommendations were introduced for 220 million US and 56 million UK citizens by 1983, in the absence of supporting evidence from RCTs." How many lives have been ruined by the low-fat theory of heart disease?
Statins work by poisoning an enzyme (HMG-CoA reductase) which is needed to produce cholesterol, adrenal and sex hormones, memory proteins and maintain cell energy. The highest concentration of cholesterol in the body is found in the brain. There were 36,605 reports of brain dysfunction from the FDA Adverse Events Databases which included memory impairment, transient cases of global amnesia, confusion, paranoia, disorientation, depression, and dementia related to statin use. Remember, this number is thought to represent only 1-10% of the true number of adverse drug reactions.
Bernstein Liebhard LLP is reporting that there are more than 1,300 product liability lawsuits involving Lipitor and diabetes now pending in U.S. District Court. They are also reporting that despite all the alleged injuries due to statin cholesterol-lowering drugs, statin medication now ranks as the most prescribed medication in the state of New Jersey.
Here is a fact that has been known for quite a long time, but it is still news to many people: People with higher cholesterol levels live longer than people with lower cholesterol levels. The reason why this fact is not well-known in the general public is because it would put a huge dent into a $100 BILLION drug market for statin drugs - drugs that lower your cholesterol. With approximately one out of every 4 Americans over the age of 50 currently prescribed a statin drug, a drug with very serious side effects, this is certainly one issue you should investigate yourself.
Lawsuits filed against Pfizer for their blockbuster cholesterol-lowering drug Lipitor reached 1162 cases filed in August. Almost all of theses cases have been filed since April, when a new study was released linking Type 2 diabetes in women with the popular statin drug. Attorneys filing claims for the victims have stated the cases could well reach 10,000. Cholesterol-lowering statin drugs are a $100 billion a year industry. Lipitor is by far the most profitable drug in the history of mankind among all pharmaceutical products, let alone being the most profitable cholesterol drug before its patent expired at the end of 2011. Sales to date from this one particular cholesterol-lowering statin drug have exceeded $140 billion. Lipitor benefited from the change in marketing laws in 1997 that allowed pharmaceutical companies in the U.S. to advertise their products directly to consumers. Pfizer convinced an entire generation of Americans that they needed a pill to lower their cholesterol in order to prevent heart disease, in what will go down as one of the most brilliant and unethical marketing schemes of all time. After Lipitor’s patent expired at the end of 2011, the FDA issued its first warnings against statin drugs, which includes: liver injury, memory loss, diabetes, and muscle damage. Soon after issuing these warnings, the lawsuits started trickling in. Today, with more and more studies being published linking statin drug use to various side effects, those lawsuits have become a tidal wave, even though you are not likely to hear much about this in the mainstream media.
A study recently published in the international journal Drug Safety found a positive association between regular statin drug use and Bell's palsy, a neurologic disorder. This study confirms what Dr. Stephanie Seneff published back in 2009, showing how stain drugs used to lower cholesterol could be a main cause of Alzheimer's and other neurological diseases in old age.
We reported last week here at Health Impact News that lawsuits filed against a manufacturer of cholesterol-lowering statin drugs had exceeded 1,000 claims just since April this year, primarily against Pfizer's Lipitor. Today, the mainstream media has finally picked up the story, as Reuter's ran a report widely distributed over several mainstream news sites. In the Reuters' story, Jessica Dye reports that U.S. women who say Lipitor gave them type-2 diabetes shot up from 56 to almost 1,000 court lawsuits in less than 5 months. Dye also interviewed H. Blair Hahn of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, the lead lawyer appointed to represent Lipitor plaintiffs in federal court. "We will ask a jury to decide what it's worth to take five years of someone's life," Hahn reportedly said. Hahn also stated that the 1,000 cases filed so far represent 4,000 women, and that the number of cases could ultimately reach 10,000 or more.
Fresh off recent news that more than 1,000 people have filed lawsuits for damages due to cholesterol-lowering drugs since April this year, comes the remarkable story reported in the Wall Street Journal that Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Sanofi SA are spending $67.5 million to purchase a voucher that will allow them to get the FDA to fast-track approval of a new class of cholesterol drugs. By purchasing this voucher, they hope to beat rival drug company Amgen, Inc. in being first to market with these new cholesterol-lowering drugs. Bloomberg Businessweek is reporting that this is a first-of-its-kind deal offered by the FDA to fast track a drug through the purchase of a voucher. However, the original voucher issued by the FDA was not even for a cholesterol lowering drug. It was originally issued to BioMarin Pharmaceutical under a 2012 law designed to reward companies for investing in drugs for rare childhood diseases. This law, which the FDA says was "intended to encourage the development of treatments for rare pediatric diseases," also allowed those awarded such vouchers to sell them to other drug companies for the development of other drugs. This has effectively created a type of legal "black market" where drug companies can sell these vouchers to the highest bidder, even though they were intended by the FDA to approve new drugs specifically for the "development of treatments for rare pediatric diseases." Since this apparently does not raise any ethical questions in the mainstream media, I will raise them here.
Top Irish surgeon warns statins raise chances of cancer and Parkinson's in otherwise healthy people. Sherif Sultan, of University College Hospital in Galway, warned that statin use can increase the risk of diabetes, cataracts and male impotence. "They can also significantly increase the risk of cancer and neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease in the elderly, along with a myriad of infectious diseases," he said.