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Suggestions/personal experiences with statins.

(81 Posts)
Katek Sun 03-Jun-18 15:01:06

DH has been on a statin for 12 years following his heart attack and will be on them for life. In the last six months, however, I think I am noticing some possible long term side effects and wondered if anyone had any experiences that might confirm my thoughts. He is plagued with digestive issues-bloating and wind - and a very subtle loss of concentration that nobody else would notice. These can be side effects I believe, but wondered if they’re inevitable or can a change of medication help? I swear he could provide enough wind for a hot air balloon!!

Ilovecheese Sun 03-Jun-18 15:11:56

My husband is also on statins for the last 7 years. He has not suffered the side effects that you mention, so those must not be inevitable, but the side effect he had was nightmares and very disturbed sleep.

After the doc changed his type of statin, the sleep disturbance is still there, but not the nightmares, so yes, I think a change of statin might help your husband.

Welshwife Sun 03-Jun-18 15:42:16

When DH and also his brother were put on statins they both had pains all over and both became very argumentative and difficult to live with. Because they both felt so bad they stopped taking them. They both had been on two different ones. They did not discuss how they actually felt till after both had decided to come off them and then were surprised at how they had had similar symptoms.

Liz46 Sun 03-Jun-18 15:49:34

I tried two different ones and was nearly poisoned. Never again although, if someone has a serious problem, I can see it could be necessary to take them. One of the side effects was extremely painful calves and as I had plantar fascitis and achilles tendon problems, I did not realise straight away that it was the statins. The physio who treated me for my achilles tendon was horrified at the effect that the statins had on my legs.

paddyann Sun 03-Jun-18 16:01:29

my OH was on statins after a series of mild heart attacks,he had horrific side efffects from them ,muscle pain sleeplessness amongst them .he came off after speaking to his GP about an alternative we found online .Since he started taking Ubiquinol capsules 6 years ago his cholesterol levels are fine and sis side effects gone .His GP now recommends then to others who find statins have side effects

Luckygirl Sun 03-Jun-18 16:11:45

I have been on atorvastatin and it took me a while to connect them with the nightmares I was having - GP halved the dose but I have been getting pains in my arms. She said to persevere and see what happens. My cholesterol is not massively high but it is in the context of not eating red meat, butter, milk, cheese etc. and mainly living on fish and veg for the last few decades. And my mobility is impaired so not as much exercise as I would like.

Deedaa Sun 03-Jun-18 20:44:09

I've been on Simvastatin for around 15 years now and haven't noticed any effects except my cholesterol being lowered.

LadyGracie Sun 03-Jun-18 20:59:02

My DH had statins following some minor strokes about 10 years ago, he stopped taking them about 2 years ago after reading about other symptoms he was experiencing being side effects of statins, these have now gone.

OldMeg Sun 03-Jun-18 21:43:04

It might not be the statins that are causing these problems.

Suki70 Sun 03-Jun-18 23:20:39

I've been taking statins for more than 12 years, first Simvastatin and then Atorvastatin, with no side effects at all, just a reduction in cholesterol that couldn't be achieved by diet alone. DH and four friends also take Atorvastatin without any problems. Perhaps your DH should talk to his GP , maybe a change of statin is required.

Eloethan Sun 03-Jun-18 23:50:17

My husband has resisted taking statins for some time. His cholestoral levels are higher than they should be, but not that high. However, because he has complained of chest pains and now has to undergo an angiogram and, if necessary, a surgical procedure, he has been told he must take the statins in order to access this.

When he told our GP that he had been "ordered" by the doctor at the hospital to take statins, our GP's face lit up with delight. Someone said that GPs are paid extra for every patient on statins. Is that correct?

A few years ago there was a lot of concern expressed about patients who were reporting serious and irreversible side effects (eg muscle pain and weakness) as a result of taking statins. My friend was on them at the time and started to experience such symptoms but I think they disappeared when the medication was changed. There has not been much coverage of this recently so I don't know if it's because the problem was exagerrated or if the medication has improved or if the media has just lost interest.

mumofmadboys Sun 03-Jun-18 23:56:33

GPs are not paid more for each person on statins. Sounds like Daily Mail propaganda!

Farmor15 Mon 04-Jun-18 00:04:59

I was reluctant to take statins as I kept hearing about side effects. However, after trying diet to reduce cholesterol, I realised that I probably should take them as I had a family history of atherosclerosis and heart disease. I’ve now been taking pravastatin for about 2 years with no side effects. I always read the leaflet with medication and if I feel any way different, I would check if it might be a side effect. Problem is, some are so vague they could be caused by anything.

Some side-effects can be caused by fillers in tablets- lactose is often used but for someone lactose intolerant it could cause digestive problems.

TwiceAsNice Mon 04-Jun-18 06:44:51

I have been on statins for quite a few years, cholesterol raised ( but not horrendous but also history of heart disease in my fathers family) . When I was on the original dose of 40 mgms to start I did have some slight muscle pain in my legs, as levels improved GP halved the dose to 20 mgms and I have had no side effects at all since and perfect cholesterol levels.

M0nica Mon 04-Jun-18 09:09:47

I was advised to take statins but when I asked my GP what difference taking them would have on my probability of having a heart attack or stroke in the next 10 years, my risk fell from 17.5% without statins to 14.7% with statins. A fall of less than 3 %. I am 75 and 10 years take me to 85, around average life expectancy for a woman anyway.

Sulis Mon 04-Jun-18 10:11:33

I was put on statins for my cholesterol. After reading about the side effects I chucked them in the bin, and started using Boots high dose plant sterols, which, although far from being free on the NHS, did the trick perfectly, with no side effects!

Greciangirl Mon 04-Jun-18 10:32:15

If you read the side effects leaflets on all drugs you take, you would end up not taking any.

Of course, most drugs have side effects, but usually they are not noticeable. If they are then get them changed.

I have been on statins for a while now and no noticeable side effects, I think.

I think the OP’s husbands flatulence might just be plain and simple wind. Maybe a change in diet might help.

NemosMum Mon 04-Jun-18 10:35:29

GPs are assessed on the QOF - Quality and Outcomes Framework, and prescription of statins is part of that, so they do have an incentive to prescribe them. I would recommend reading Too Many Pills just published, by James LeFanu, who is a GP who writes a column for the Monday DT. He is a very common-sense physician. I've just started it, and it's excellent.

paperbackbutterfly Mon 04-Jun-18 10:38:17

My OH was given statins. He was in pain all over within days and his ankles swelled. He had a rash on his legs that itched and he was moody and forgetful. He has come off the statins and the pain has gone but he still occasionally has the rash and he still has mood swings. We both regret that he ever took these horrible drugs.

B9exchange Mon 04-Jun-18 11:13:45

If you have a cholesterol check, do ask what the cholesterol ratio is, rather than the total cholesterol. It is the ratio that is used in the risk checker You can use this to work out your own risk, but try putting in different ages and see the difference. You can't change your age, and age alone is not enough reason to go on statins, whatever the drug companies (who do all the research) might say!

Matelda Mon 04-Jun-18 11:16:32

NemosMum. I have just finished reading Too Many Pills by Dr James Le Fanu and it has left me very angry. GPs are funded in a way which requires them to diagnose and treat even mildly raised cholesterol, blood pressure etc, and Type 2 diabetes is especially lucrative. As older people’s levels go up anyway, far more have been put on pills than were considered to need them a few years ago. These pills all carry the risk of side effects, and here again elderly people are more likely to be hit. And the pills interact with each other too.

Nanna58 Mon 04-Jun-18 11:26:35

You might want to check out reports that suggest stains cause muscle pain problems because they should be taken in conjunction with tha supplement CoEnzyme Q10 to help prevent this. My husband started these and his problems ceased.

Skweek1 Mon 04-Jun-18 11:59:51

Everybody is being put on statins, and most seem to have some sort of side effect. The latest news seems to be that they can actually cause diabetes. As a possibly Type 1 diabetic, I was prescribed statins to prevent potential heart attack and they have not reduced my cholesterol levels in the slightest. Furthermore, DH, weighing about 10 stone, has been diagnosed as Type 2 since his statin prescription. His Cholesterol has been low and stable since before the prescription. Talk to GP and ask if really needed. If doc cannot given suitable advice, my advice is not to take the damn things - they can cause more problems than they cure.

ReadyMeals Mon 04-Jun-18 13:42:22

Welshwife those pains are a potential serious side effect of the drug and should have been reported to their GP. As for the wind (OP) I don't think it's related. Has he decided to change his diet to be more healthy as a result of being told he has high cholesterol? He may be eating more fruit and vegetables now, and a lot of people find that increases flatulence.

EEJit Mon 04-Jun-18 14:13:35

After being on statins I started to get forgetful. Trip to the doctors and they were changed to a different one. Problem solved