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Author Topic: AMA Labels Obesity a Disease  (Read 4333 times) Average Rating: 0
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minasoliman
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« Reply #225 on: July 02, 2013, 09:34:48 PM »

One more reflective comment.  There was a time when mere physiological understanding of the body dictated how physicians should treat the patient and then wait for the research to be published.  This approach was completely shot down later on, as now the accepted method is "evidence-based medicine". 

Case in point:  Beta-blockers were considered anathema to give to a patient that underwent an MI.  The idea was that the heart is failing, so why would you want to "block" the heart any further than it is.  Well, research proved otherwise, as beta-blockers, the correct one to choose, was actually associated with improvement of mortality rates than NOT using beta-blockers.  So, the anathema was lifted, and it humbled physicians on how much they don't know, even if it physiologically doesn't make sense.  The new theory now is that the blockage gives the heart enough of a chance to "rebuild" itself in a stronger fashion as best as it can depending on the level of infarct it underwent.

So...could there be research that shows that statins or lowering cholesterol makes no difference?  Perhaps...but the research so far sways to the side of using statins and the safety profile of statins.  Just because you can quote a few research on one side does not mean you neglect the overwhelming research on the other.  Evidence-based medicine dictates thus far that statins do in fact make a significant (not insignificant as some might have you believe) difference in decreasing mortality rates in certain groups of people, particularly MI and perhaps stroke patients.

I remember one time a neuroloscientist shared with our class how he was perplexed on the publication of research that showed that glutamate molecules do not in fact "excite" the brain as it was always believed.  So, he and a team reproduced this particular research's methodology in their own research and actually proved that previous research wrong.  Reproducibility is key.  It seems time and again after repeated research, statins are published more times as helpful than as not helpful.  If not helping by lowering cholesterol as many here might want to believe, at least it does something beneficial we probably need to figure more about, just as beta-blockers were mistakenly thought of.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2013, 09:38:08 PM by minasoliman » Logged

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« Reply #226 on: July 02, 2013, 10:42:50 PM »

How about an UpToDate article...UpToDate is literally the Bible of practicing Physicians.  If you want to convince a Physician you know better than him/her, quote something from UpToDate.

http://www.uptodate.com/contents/cholesterol-lowering-after-an-acute-coronary-syndrome

Quote
All patients with an acute coronary syndrome (ACS), including ST elevation (Q wave) myocardial infarction (STEMI), non-ST elevation (non-Q wave) myocardial infarction (NSTEMI), or unstable angina (UA), should receive long-term lipid-lowering therapy with a statin [1-3]. This recommendation is largely derived from multiple secondary prevention trials that demonstrated a benefit from statin therapy in patients who had had an ACS.

This topic will discuss when to initiate statin therapy, how to manage patients already on statin, the choice of statin, and how to manage patients with a low baseline low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. General treatment guidelines for hypercholesterolemia are discussed separately.

So it's clear enough when it comes to MI, it's imperative upon a physician to begin statin therapy.  You may refuse if you like.  But this is the recommendation.  I'm not trying to be stubborn upon research or refusing to expand my horizons.  In fact, I'm very concerned with the way people misuse research.

In any case, here's the UpToDate on Stroke and Statins:

http://www.uptodate.com/contents/initial-assessment-and-management-of-acute-stroke?detectedLanguage=en&source=search_result&search=statins+and+acute+stroke&selectedTitle=1%7E150&provider=noProvider#H10064197

Quote
A separate issue involves patients on statin therapy at the time of acute stroke. This issue was directly addressed in a single-center randomized controlled trial of 89 patients who were already treated with a statin and were assigned to continuation or cessation of statin therapy in the acute phase of ischemic stroke [77]. The rate of death or dependency at three months was significantly lower with continuation of statin treatment (39 versus 60 percent). The largest observational study, which evaluated over 12,000 subjects hospitalized with ischemic stroke, found that statin use before and during hospitalization was associated with improved outcome at hospital discharge and with improved survival at one year [78,79]. Furthermore, initiation of statin treatment early in hospitalization was associated with improved survival, while statin discontinuation early in hospitalization, even for a short period, was associated with decreased survival. Likewise, another uncontrolled study of 448 patients reported that new or continued statin treatment in the first 72 hours after acute ischemic stroke was associated with improved early and late (one-year) survival [80].

Based upon limited information, we suggest continuing statin treatment for patients receiving statin therapy prior to ischemic stroke onset. This suggestion is in accord with current guidelines [2].

An observational study of 2072 patients who received intravenous thrombolysis for acute ischemic stroke found that statin treatment started within 72 hours of thrombolysis was associated with a favorable functional outcome and a reduced risk of death at three months [81]. Of the 839 patients treated with statins, 65 percent were statin naïve. However, baseline differences in risk factors between the statin and no statin groups may have had a negative impact on the latter group. Therefore, data from randomized controlled trials are needed to determine whether initiating statin therapy de novo in patients with acute ischemic stroke is beneficial.

In other words, while it is imperative for physicians to also prescribe statins for acute stroke (which means there's enough research to suggest prescribing it with confidence), there is limited research on the benefits of statins for strokes, and there needs to be a follow up on more research.  So, I'll give you that.  But case of the MI is overwhelming.

Anyways...I said my peace with UpToDate.  This thread was about obesity anyway.  So, this will be my last post on the benefits of statins.

The studies that show that lowering cholesterol improves longevity or significantly cuts heart disease have been all over the map. Taken as a whole it is very clear that there is no meaningful improvement if you lower cholesterol... In fact there are large studies where the death rate is higher for those who got cholesterol lowering diets vs those who were left alone...


 Now maybe you have found the study that finally settles the matter, but I doubt that very much.


And are you really suggesting that the data shown in that graph I linked to has completely changed and now ..all of a sudden.. Countries that have high average cholesterol now also have high rates of heart disease?.. Really? Aborigines in Australia have the highest rates of heart disease in the World but very low average cholesterol.. Do you beleive that has changed?.     

Here is the Journalist Gary Taubes (staff writer for "The Journal of Science") talking about what the data really shows. Convince him and you can convince me.

here you go:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YCBMV6d9HSg

     
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« Reply #227 on: July 03, 2013, 10:23:51 AM »

Allow me to state my position for clarity..

High Cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease. Inflammation is the culprit. Cholesterol is like the firemen and inflammation is the actual fire.

Vast numbers of people with high cholesterol dont get heart disease. In fact older women with high cholesterol live longer than any other group of people.

Vast numbers of people with low cholesterol do get heart disease. Entire populations with low average cholesterol also have extremely high rates of heart disease.

GO FIGURE

If your beginning hypothesis is that Cholesterol causes heart disease and therefore must be lowered either through diet or drugs, the data does not support your assumption.

If you take statins which artificially lower Cholesterol you will see some improvement in the incidence of heart disease mostly in patients that have had a prior event. But if High Cholesterol does not correlate with heart disease why is that so? It is most likely that statins are also strongly anti-inflammatory...   Cholesterol is are the firemen, inflammation is the actual fire. Statins work only to the extent they lower inflammation.

But statins carry risks that are certainly not worth the anti-inflammatory benefit. There are all kinds of easily accessible anti inflamitores that dont even need a prescription, from fish oil to baby aspirin.

 Artificially lowering Cholesterol is a dumb thing to do. Statins block your liver from making cholesterol ( and concurrently block other cholesterol like substances like CoQ10 which is important for heart function) . They accelerate dementia ( your brain needs lots of cholesterol to function properly) to brain fog, memory loss and even global amnesia.

Statins are associated with sudden heart failure do to the lack of CoQ10. There is new evidence that artificially low cholesterol can cause diabetes. Statins can damage your liver and worst of all, if you drive you cholesterol too low, you increase your risk of getting cancer.

The benefits of statins are off set by the marked increase of death from other causes.

And for what? For having a med that is a good Anti-inflammatory ?? Anti-Inflammatories are a dime a dozen and have no big side effects ( aspirin may hurt you stomach).

Therefore, Statins are a scam. They are a scandal..

If you go to the Doctor he will prescribe a statin because he knows that if you drop dead of a heart attack and he didnt prescribe a statin even though you have elevated cholesterol, your widow's lawyer will take away his home, his car and maybe even his wife.

So if you go to the Doctor with high Cholesterol and he prescribes a statin, smile nicely and thank him. Take the free samples and flush them down the toilet. Stop eating sugar and take fish oil. Your Cholesterol will likely be lower the next check up.Thank him for the great advice and tell him how smart and handsome he is. Continue to flush the free samples.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2013, 10:26:40 AM by Marc1152 » Logged

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« Reply #228 on: July 03, 2013, 11:55:16 AM »

Yeah, there is a lot more to this story, but everyone seems to have a different story.  

I've also read that a Vitamin C deficiency causes damaged blood vessels which are more likely to have plaque that leads to heart disease.
http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2011/jun2011_Optimize-Your-Internal-Defenses-Against-Radiation-Exposure_02.htm

And, then some say Vitamin K2 causes Calcium to be properly deposited in your bones and not in your arteries where it can lead to heart attacks, so if you don't get enough K2, you are more prone to heart attacks.

http://www.naturalnews.com/034741_calcium_vitamin_K2_bones.html
http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/foods-rich-vitamin-k2-1561.html

I was going through alot of stress and my diet wasn't the best and I ended up with high cholesterol.  Instead of the doctor giving me any good advice, his nurse just called me to say they would recheck it in 1 month and if it was still too high, the doctor wanted me to take statins.   I had to do my own research and look up myself what to do!  I don't know if the doctor was lazy or was just too jaded from dealing with unmotivated people.  I found out myself what to eat, such as raw carrots, etc, and it wasn't a problem after that.   MY mother just had high cholesterol recently, and she just made some changes such as increasing soluble fiber and her next test was fine.  It doesn't seem like it takes that much to lower it to reasonable numbers.

Sometimes it seems to me they should just go back to where we were 20 years ago, before all the low-fat and high fructose corn syrup and being told eggs are bad, and start over with new recommendations.  
« Last Edit: July 03, 2013, 11:56:23 AM by Adela » Logged
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« Reply #229 on: July 03, 2013, 12:29:25 PM »

In their defense, med students and doctors are frequently overworked and probably under-educated.  Yes...I did say under-educated.  Think about it...of all the 100's of hours of academic study in medical school--anatomy, physiology, chemistry, surgery, dermatology, gastroenterology, and all the other -ologies, how many are devoted to pharmacy/pharmacology/drug interactions and nutrition?  Perhaps Minsoliman or someone else here can answer that.

Another potential problem with conventional western medicine is the huge over-emphasis on treating lab. results and the name of the "disease" as opposed to the person as a whole.  This goes to the very heart of the argument between those who advocate the conventional western approach and those who advocate more "holistic" approaches that include the modalities I listed above--TCM/acupuncture, homeopathy, Ayurvedic medicine, etc.
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« Reply #230 on: July 03, 2013, 02:38:09 PM »

In their defense, med students and doctors are frequently overworked and probably under-educated.  Yes...I did say under-educated.  Think about it...of all the 100's of hours of academic study in medical school--anatomy, physiology, chemistry, surgery, dermatology, gastroenterology, and all the other -ologies, how many are devoted to pharmacy/pharmacology/drug interactions and nutrition?  Perhaps Minsoliman or someone else here can answer that.

Another potential problem with conventional western medicine is the huge over-emphasis on treating lab. results and the name of the "disease" as opposed to the person as a whole.  This goes to the very heart of the argument between those who advocate the conventional western approach and those who advocate more "holistic" approaches that include the modalities I listed above--TCM/acupuncture, homeopathy, Ayurvedic medicine, etc.

In general terms, first year of medical school is the basic sciences of a healthy human, like anatomy, histology, physiology, biochemistry, genetics, nutrition, etc.  The second year of medical school is clinical sciences, mainly pharm, path, and micro (drugs, diseases, and bugs).  Yes, we do study nutrition and we do study drug interactions and side effects.  It's not like we're oblivious to the side effects.  But we're also realistic.  If the side effects happen to 1% of the population, we're not going to raise alarms to the world to scare you of the side effects like you're absolutely going to get them and it's not worth it and you should just flush them down the toilet.  We're wary of them, which is why you always follow up with a doctor who will do the appropriate history, physical, and lab/imaging tests to make sure you're not getting the side effects (or avoid the drug completely if you're taking another drug or part of a subgroup of people that have an increased chance of getting the side effects).  Medicine is a very practical profession and has very good protocols to work with.  Yes, medical students and doctors do get overworked and have no life.  But that's the beauty of the human body.  There's just that much to learn and treat.

As for medicine alternatives, if it's not published and challenged in peer-reviewed journals, it's not valid to be practiced in medicine.
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« Reply #231 on: July 03, 2013, 02:53:57 PM »

In their defense, med students and doctors are frequently overworked and probably under-educated.  Yes...I did say under-educated.  Think about it...of all the 100's of hours of academic study in medical school--anatomy, physiology, chemistry, surgery, dermatology, gastroenterology, and all the other -ologies, how many are devoted to pharmacy/pharmacology/drug interactions and nutrition?  Perhaps Minsoliman or someone else here can answer that.

Another potential problem with conventional western medicine is the huge over-emphasis on treating lab. results and the name of the "disease" as opposed to the person as a whole.  This goes to the very heart of the argument between those who advocate the conventional western approach and those who advocate more "holistic" approaches that include the modalities I listed above--TCM/acupuncture, homeopathy, Ayurvedic medicine, etc.

In general terms, first year of medical school is the basic sciences of a healthy human, like anatomy, histology, physiology, biochemistry, genetics, nutrition, etc.  The second year of medical school is clinical sciences, mainly pharm, path, and micro (drugs, diseases, and bugs).  Yes, we do study nutrition and we do study drug interactions and side effects.  It's not like we're oblivious to the side effects.  But we're also realistic.  If the side effects happen to 1% of the population, we're not going to raise alarms to the world to scare you of the side effects like you're absolutely going to get them and it's not worth it and you should just flush them down the toilet.  We're wary of them, which is why you always follow up with a doctor who will do the appropriate history, physical, and lab/imaging tests to make sure you're not getting the side effects (or avoid the drug completely if you're taking another drug or part of a subgroup of people that have an increased chance of getting the side effects).  Medicine is a very practical profession and has very good protocols to work with.  Yes, medical students and doctors do get overworked and have no life.  But that's the beauty of the human body.  There's just that much to learn and treat.

I'm sure you don't study pharm in the same depth that a pharmacy student would, but then, with everything else, how could you? Wink  As for nutrition, you say you study it.  But the question is, how much?  A 2-hour overview?  A continuing course that may accrue to something like 10 or even 20 hours?  More?  Less?  Not that nutrition is the be all and end all, of course, but a good knowledge of it can save patients (and insurance companies) lots of $$ on prescriptions and other treatments that might be prevented by simply eating better.  There's even a book out, "Food Is Your Best Medicine" by Henry G. Bieler M.D. http://www.amazon.com/Food-Your-Medicine-Henry-Bieler/dp/0345351835/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1372877877&sr=1-1&keywords=food+is+your+best+medicine that's worth having a look at. 

And then...... Grin depending on how open-mined and daring you are  Grin, there's the whole world of "alternative" medicine for you to explore, most of which is not toxic at all, and has proven results.  As a medical doctor you could be in a unique and excellent position to be able to offer your patients the best of all modalities, depending on what might be most appropriate for any given individual.  (Thought I'd give it one last shot... Grin.)
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« Reply #232 on: July 03, 2013, 05:04:33 PM »

In their defense, med students and doctors are frequently overworked and probably under-educated.  Yes...I did say under-educated.  Think about it...of all the 100's of hours of academic study in medical school--anatomy, physiology, chemistry, surgery, dermatology, gastroenterology, and all the other -ologies, how many are devoted to pharmacy/pharmacology/drug interactions and nutrition?  Perhaps Minsoliman or someone else here can answer that.

Another potential problem with conventional western medicine is the huge over-emphasis on treating lab. results and the name of the "disease" as opposed to the person as a whole.  This goes to the very heart of the argument between those who advocate the conventional western approach and those who advocate more "holistic" approaches that include the modalities I listed above--TCM/acupuncture, homeopathy, Ayurvedic medicine, etc.

In general terms, first year of medical school is the basic sciences of a healthy human, like anatomy, histology, physiology, biochemistry, genetics, nutrition, etc.  The second year of medical school is clinical sciences, mainly pharm, path, and micro (drugs, diseases, and bugs).  Yes, we do study nutrition and we do study drug interactions and side effects.  It's not like we're oblivious to the side effects.  But we're also realistic.  If the side effects happen to 1% of the population, we're not going to raise alarms to the world to scare you of the side effects like you're absolutely going to get them and it's not worth it and you should just flush them down the toilet.  We're wary of them, which is why you always follow up with a doctor who will do the appropriate history, physical, and lab/imaging tests to make sure you're not getting the side effects (or avoid the drug completely if you're taking another drug or part of a subgroup of people that have an increased chance of getting the side effects).  Medicine is a very practical profession and has very good protocols to work with.  Yes, medical students and doctors do get overworked and have no life.  But that's the beauty of the human body.  There's just that much to learn and treat.

As for medicine alternatives, if it's not published and challenged in peer-reviewed journals, it's not valid to be practiced in medicine.



http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/04/17/statin-side-effects.aspx

    A recent study of more than 100,000 people who’d been prescribed statins from 2000 to 2008 found that 17 percent of patients reported side effects such as muscle pain, nausea, and liver and nervous system problems.1

    Two-thirds of those who reported side effects quit taking the drugs, and, the study found, half of those prescribed statins quit taking them at least temporarily, while 20 percent quit for more than a year.

    The researchers noted that many of the side effects are “tolerable” or specific to only one statin, not the entire class, suggesting that people can remain on the drugs or switch to a different statin if problems arise. But the truth is that many statin side effects are quite serious.

    Oftentimes statins do not have any immediate side effects, and they are quite effective at lowering cholesterol levels by 50 points or more (which may not actually have any impact on your heart disease risk). This makes it appear as though they're benefiting your health, and health problems that develop later on are frequently misinterpreted as new and unrelated health problems.

...Statins have also been shown to increase your risk of diabetes via a number of different mechanisms

...Earlier this year new research also found that taking higher doses of the statins simvastatin (Zocor), atorvastatin (Lipitor) or rosuvastatin (Crestor) increases your risk of acute kidney injury by 34 percent, a condition that can be fatal.

...The biggest “sham” of all is that statin drugs, which millions are taking as a form of “preventive medicine” to protect their heart health, can have detrimental effects on your heart. Take a study in the journal Atherosclerosis,4 which showed that statin use is associated with a 52 percent increased prevalence and extent of calcified coronary plaque compared to non-users. Coronary artery calcification is the hallmark of potentially lethal heart disease!

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« Reply #233 on: July 03, 2013, 07:02:23 PM »

Dr. Mercola is a quack:

http://www.quackwatch.com/11Ind/mercola.html

It looks like Mercola is a really good scam artist and businessman than he is a doctor. He sounds like a disgrace to the profession.
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« Reply #234 on: July 03, 2013, 07:55:11 PM »

Dr. Mercola is a quack:

http://www.quackwatch.com/11Ind/mercola.html

It looks like Mercola is a really good scam artist and businessman than he is a doctor. He sounds like a disgrace to the profession.

LOL...Old lawyers saying, if you cant refute the evidence, attack the witness.. The data certainly supports his view point and if you ever watch his videos you will notice a long line of people appearing with him with impeccable credentials.

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« Reply #235 on: July 03, 2013, 08:07:23 PM »

Peripheral nuerapothy (Numbness usually in extremities)  is serious enough to render you ininsurable for disability coverage, long term care insurance and will make it difficult to even get life insurance.

The risk as you will read below may be as high as 14% higher in people who take Statins.

http://www.statinanswers.com/effects.htm 


Small countries like Demark or Iceland are great for studying medical conditions. Because the population is genetically similar as opposed to the vast melting pot of the United States, it is easier to conduct a controlled study. A famous Danish study of neuropathy as a side effect to statin use concluded that an individual who is a long-term user of statin drugs has anywhere from 4 to 14 times greater risk of developing peripheral neuropathy than a person who does not take statin drugs. Typically, long-term use of statins is defined as 2 years or more but neuropathy can occur even after just a few days of use in a susceptible individual.
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« Reply #236 on: July 03, 2013, 08:52:34 PM »

Dr. Mercola is a quack:

http://www.quackwatch.com/11Ind/mercola.html

It looks like Mercola is a really good scam artist and businessman than he is a doctor. He sounds like a disgrace to the profession.

LOL...Old lawyers saying, if you cant refute the evidence, attack the witness.. The data certainly supports his view point and if you ever watch his videos you will notice a long line of people appearing with him with impeccable credentials.


I gave you an UpToDate article that contradicts exactly what he's saying...his website is also filled with articles about vaccine-induced autism.  A man with those credentials should get his license suspended.

He hypes up the data.  He's not being honest.
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« Reply #237 on: July 03, 2013, 08:55:21 PM »

Peripheral nuerapothy (Numbness usually in extremities)  is serious enough to render you ininsurable for disability coverage, long term care insurance and will make it difficult to even get life insurance.

The risk as you will read below may be as high as 14% higher in people who take Statins.

http://www.statinanswers.com/effects.htm 


Small countries like Demark or Iceland are great for studying medical conditions. Because the population is genetically similar as opposed to the vast melting pot of the United States, it is easier to conduct a controlled study. A famous Danish study of neuropathy as a side effect to statin use concluded that an individual who is a long-term user of statin drugs has anywhere from 4 to 14 times greater risk of developing peripheral neuropathy than a person who does not take statin drugs. Typically, long-term use of statins is defined as 2 years or more but neuropathy can occur even after just a few days of use in a susceptible individual.

For once, you bring an article that I actually agree with and like.  Yes, these are the side effects.  Yes, Danish people seem to be more susceptible.  Therefore, we need to be judicious not just with statins, but with any meds we prescribe patients.  But the hype you bring is misguided.
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« Reply #238 on: July 04, 2013, 07:22:20 PM »

Dr. Mercola is a quack:

http://www.quackwatch.com/11Ind/mercola.html

It looks like Mercola is a really good scam artist and businessman than he is a doctor. He sounds like a disgrace to the profession.

LOL...Old lawyers saying, if you cant refute the evidence, attack the witness.. The data certainly supports his view point and if you ever watch his videos you will notice a long line of people appearing with him with impeccable credentials.


I gave you an UpToDate article that contradicts exactly what he's saying...his website is also filled with articles about vaccine-induced autism.  A man with those credentials should get his license suspended.

He hypes up the data.  He's not being honest.

The truth about cholesterol has many proponents, well past Dr. Mercola. If you don't like him I can give you a long list of well credentialed people with impeccable credentials who say the same things.

Btw... You have not stated yours yet. Are you a medical student? You mentioned you dont yet have the ability to write prescriptions.
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« Reply #239 on: July 04, 2013, 07:28:45 PM »

Yes, I'm a medical student.  I'll be finishing medical school this October.  I'm considered an "off-season" student.

The "truth about cholesterol" is one thing.  I have not argued about the "truth about cholesterol" (this is a fairly new theory that's coming up these days that I've heard about, but yet to see more research on).  I've argued for the misguided fear of statins.
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« Reply #240 on: July 04, 2013, 07:34:04 PM »

Peripheral nuerapothy (Numbness usually in extremities)  is serious enough to render you ininsurable for disability coverage, long term care insurance and will make it difficult to even get life insurance.

The risk as you will read below may be as high as 14% higher in people who take Statins.

http://www.statinanswers.com/effects.htm 


Small countries like Demark or Iceland are great for studying medical conditions. Because the population is genetically similar as opposed to the vast melting pot of the United States, it is easier to conduct a controlled study. A famous Danish study of neuropathy as a side effect to statin use concluded that an individual who is a long-term user of statin drugs has anywhere from 4 to 14 times greater risk of developing peripheral neuropathy than a person who does not take statin drugs. Typically, long-term use of statins is defined as 2 years or more but neuropathy can occur even after just a few days of use in a susceptible individual.

For once, you bring an article that I actually agree with and like.  Yes, these are the side effects.  Yes, Danish people seem to be more susceptible.  Therefore, we need to be judicious not just with statins, but with any meds we prescribe patients.  But the hype you bring is misguided.

Read that again. No one said they are "more susceptible" they said they are easier to study.

One again, the link between cholesterol and heart disease is very very tenuous. Therefore, why take any risks at all if there is no actual benefit?

About 18 months ago Genworth Financial, a major Life Insurance Company did a comprehensive study of their book of business. That amounts to hundreds of thousands of people. They could find no  connection between high cholesterol and death..None. They have stopped bothering people who apply for coverage and no longer test for cholesterol unless there is a history of well over 300... Insurance companies are not influenced by the Pharmaceutical Companies.  
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« Reply #241 on: July 04, 2013, 07:40:55 PM »

Yes, I'm a medical student.  I'll be finishing medical school this October.  I'm considered an "off-season" student.

The "truth about cholesterol" is one thing.  I have not argued about the "truth about cholesterol" (this is a fairly new theory that's coming up these days that I've heard about, but yet to see more research on).  I've argued for the misguided fear of statins.

I think some side effects of statins are under reported. For example, depression is a common side effect but how many people or their doctors are going to make the connection and then take the trouble to report it?

 Cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease. Therefore, no one should take statins (practically no one).. As people take them for longer and longer periods of time we are just beginning to see the level of damage they do long term and for no real benefit.
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« Reply #242 on: July 04, 2013, 07:54:10 PM »

Peripheral nuerapothy (Numbness usually in extremities)  is serious enough to render you ininsurable for disability coverage, long term care insurance and will make it difficult to even get life insurance.

The risk as you will read below may be as high as 14% higher in people who take Statins.

http://www.statinanswers.com/effects.htm 


Small countries like Demark or Iceland are great for studying medical conditions. Because the population is genetically similar as opposed to the vast melting pot of the United States, it is easier to conduct a controlled study. A famous Danish study of neuropathy as a side effect to statin use concluded that an individual who is a long-term user of statin drugs has anywhere from 4 to 14 times greater risk of developing peripheral neuropathy than a person who does not take statin drugs. Typically, long-term use of statins is defined as 2 years or more but neuropathy can occur even after just a few days of use in a susceptible individual.

For once, you bring an article that I actually agree with and like.  Yes, these are the side effects.  Yes, Danish people seem to be more susceptible.  Therefore, we need to be judicious not just with statins, but with any meds we prescribe patients.  But the hype you bring is misguided.

Read that again. No one said they are "more susceptible" they said they are easier to study.

One again, the link between cholesterol and heart disease is very very tenuous. Therefore, why take any risks at all if there is no actual benefit?

About 18 months ago Genworth Financial, a major Life Insurance Company did a comprehensive study of their book of business. That amounts to hundreds of thousands of people. They could find no  connection between high cholesterol and death..None. They have stopped bothering people who apply for coverage and no longer test for cholesterol unless there is a history of well over 300... Insurance companies are not influenced by the Pharmaceutical Companies.   

Come on...insurance companies will jump at anything not to pay for something.  A good "comprehensive" study is a study not sponsored by any pharmaceutical or insurance company at all.


Anyways...I did a quick pubmed search.  I find that there's a lot of disagreement on how much exactly statins do cause peripheral neuropathy.  There's a lot of case-controls and cross-sectionals, but very few prospective studies.  In the surface, physicians monitor and ask patients appropriately in their continued use of statins if they have any symptoms, but until then, the amount of those who receive neuropathy is inconclusive.

That's not to say there aren't any studies that agree with you, but review of the literature seems to indicate there are also studies that disagree with you.

Physicians continue to monitor patients' liver panel levels, and inquire about patient's in any muscle pain or "pins and needles" they might be feeling when taking statins.
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« Reply #243 on: July 06, 2013, 10:54:55 AM »

Peripheral nuerapothy (Numbness usually in extremities)  is serious enough to render you ininsurable for disability coverage, long term care insurance and will make it difficult to even get life insurance.

The risk as you will read below may be as high as 14% higher in people who take Statins.

http://www.statinanswers.com/effects.htm 


Small countries like Demark or Iceland are great for studying medical conditions. Because the population is genetically similar as opposed to the vast melting pot of the United States, it is easier to conduct a controlled study. A famous Danish study of neuropathy as a side effect to statin use concluded that an individual who is a long-term user of statin drugs has anywhere from 4 to 14 times greater risk of developing peripheral neuropathy than a person who does not take statin drugs. Typically, long-term use of statins is defined as 2 years or more but neuropathy can occur even after just a few days of use in a susceptible individual.

For once, you bring an article that I actually agree with and like.  Yes, these are the side effects.  Yes, Danish people seem to be more susceptible.  Therefore, we need to be judicious not just with statins, but with any meds we prescribe patients.  But the hype you bring is misguided.

Read that again. No one said they are "more susceptible" they said they are easier to study.

One again, the link between cholesterol and heart disease is very very tenuous. Therefore, why take any risks at all if there is no actual benefit?

About 18 months ago Genworth Financial, a major Life Insurance Company did a comprehensive study of their book of business. That amounts to hundreds of thousands of people. They could find no  connection between high cholesterol and death..None. They have stopped bothering people who apply for coverage and no longer test for cholesterol unless there is a history of well over 300... Insurance companies are not influenced by the Pharmaceutical Companies.   

Come on...insurance companies will jump at anything not to pay for something.  A good "comprehensive" study is a study not sponsored by any pharmaceutical or insurance company at all.


Anyways...I did a quick pubmed search.  I find that there's a lot of disagreement on how much exactly statins do cause peripheral neuropathy.  There's a lot of case-controls and cross-sectionals, but very few prospective studies.  In the surface, physicians monitor and ask patients appropriately in their continued use of statins if they have any symptoms, but until then, the amount of those who receive neuropathy is inconclusive.

That's not to say there aren't any studies that agree with you, but review of the literature seems to indicate there are also studies that disagree with you.

Physicians continue to monitor patients' liver panel levels, and inquire about patient's in any muscle pain or "pins and needles" they might be feeling when taking statins.

Insurance companies are one of the few and maybe only big sectors concerned with health and not in any way under the corrupting influence of the Pharmaceutical Industry. They depend on good information in order to accurately predict morbidity. Accurate prediction of morbidity is the way they make money.

I think it is very interesting that insurers are backing off high cholesterol in order to make their predictions. They have found absolutely no correlation between their claims experience and level of cholesterol. Go figure

This is in line with the scientific date. As I posted earlier, Gary Taubes spoke about how the studies that looked at cholesterol lowering diets were all over the map. In one study the rate of death went up for people on cholesterol lowering diets.

We also know that the foundational studies conducted by Dr. Ansel Keys were gerry rigged and invalid and when the study was repeated ( looking at heart disease vs average rate of cholesterol in national populations) there was absolutely no correlation. Not even close.

If high cholesterol does not cause heart disease and statins are still being prescribed far and wide, that may be unethical.

One more word on under reporting of statin side effects. If doctors and the public are being led to believe that side effects are rare, what happens when someone goes to their doctor complaining of depression? How many doctors will then take the person off of statins? Pretty much none I would bet. The patient will likely be give more drugs, anti-depressants and the statin will never be reported to anyone as being the culprit. 

But the over arching question is if cholesterol is not at all correlated with morbidity, why take statins and assume any of it's risks at all? 

 
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« Reply #244 on: July 06, 2013, 02:31:50 PM »

http://chriskresser.com/cholesterol-doesnt-cause-heart-disease

..more than 40 trials have been performed to determine whether lowering cholesterol levels can prevent heart disease. In some trials heart disease rates went down, in others they went up. But when the results of all of the trials were taken together, just as many people died in the treatment groups (who had their cholesterol levels lowered by drugs) as in the control groups (who had no treatment).

If you’re still skeptical after reading all of this, perhaps William Castelli, the director of the famed Framingham Heart Study mentioned above can convince you:

“Serum cholesterol is not a strong risk factor for CHD, in the sense that blood pressure is a strong risk factor for stroke or cigarette smoking is a risk factor for lung cancer.”

...Again, the Framingham Study which followed 15,000 participants over three generations:

“There is a direct association between falling cholesterol levels over the first 14 years and mortality over the following 18 years.”

In other words, as cholesterol fell death rates went up.

...The Honolulu Heart Program study, with 8,000 participants, published in 2001:

“Long-term persistence of low cholesterol concentration actually increases the risk of death. Thus, the earlier the patients start to have lower cholesterol concentrations, the greater the risk of death.”

And finally, the huge Japanese Lipid Intervention Trial with over 47,000 participants:

The highest death rate observed was among those with lowest cholesterol (under 160mg/dl); lowest death rate observed was with those whose cholesterol was between 200-259mg/dl”

In other words, those with the lowest cholesterol had the highest death rate, and those with cholesterol levels that would today be called “dangerous” had the lowest death rate.

As you can see, not only does high cholesterol not cause heart disease, low cholesterol can actually be dangerous to your health.

http://chriskresser.com/cholesterol-doesnt-cause-heart-disease
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