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Long-term use of statins reduces mortality, inflammation in COPD, review says

32019image006.jpgA recent review showed that the long-term use of statins reduced the risk of acute exacerbation in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), heart disease–related mortality and all-cause mortality, as well as decreased inflammatory factors. Statins are a group of drugs that act to reduce levels of fats, including triglycerides and cholesterol, in the blood.

Co-morbidities worsen outcomes in COPD, and the researchers noted that
cardiovascular disease (CVD) is prevalent in patients with COPD. Pulmonary hypertension, in particular, is one of the most severe accompanying illnesses. Per reporting, the authors said there is a “growing understanding of systemic inflammation in a subset of patients with COPD,” and that high levels of C reactive protein (CRP) and IL-6 have been associated with poor outcomes.

The authors conducted an analysis to produce estimates of the effect of mortality, inflammatory factors and lung function index in COPD patients by searching four databases (PubMed, Web of Science, Embase, and China National Knowledge Infrastructure) between January 1990 to March 2018. They also conducted a network analysis to synthetically compare the effectiveness of using different statins in patients with COPD.

Out of 988 studies, the researchers settled on a 53 to use in the analysis that met several scientific pre-conditions. According to the analysis, using statins reduced the risk of all-cause mortality, heart disease-related mortality and acute exacerbation in COPD. It also reduced C reactive protein and pulmonary hypertension in COPD patients.

Analysis showed that fluvastatin (97.7 percent), atorvastatin (68 percent) and rosuvastatin (49.3 percent) had higher cumulative probability than other statins in reducing C reactive protein in COPD patients. Fluvastatin (76 percent) and atorvastatin (75.4 percent) had higher cumulative probability than other satins in reducing PH in COPD patients.

The researchers said their study answers whether statins can reduce inflammation and pulmonary hypertension, and which statin is more effective for COPD.

Click here to read the full article on AJMC.