Tel Aviv, Israel – Statins for lowering LDL cholesterol levels (“bad cholesterol,”) are the most commonly prescribed medications in the Western world. The guidelines of the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the American Heart Association (AHA) for statin therapy to prevent cardiovascular disease have changed the older paradigm of treating patients based on LDL target levels to a more complicated risk assessment of atherosclerotic cardiovascular events.
Adopting the ACC/AHA guidelines would increase substantially the already large number of patients on statins.
In the study, “The potential effects of implementing the 2013 ACC/AHA cholesterol guidelines on the use of statins in a large health maintenance organization in Israel,” published in Value in Health Regional Issues, Volume 7, (September/October 2015), researchers aimed to assess the impact of adopting these guidelines on the number of patients requiring statins therapy in a large health maintenance organization in Israel, in which 30% of the nearly 800,000 adults aged 40y or above are currently treated with statins.
Adopting the new guidelines would increase the proportion of statin treated members to 48% with a cost per cardiovascular event prevented estimated at $US 20,500.