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Should we abandon statins in the prevention of bone fractures?

Authors
Type
Published Article
Journal
Endocrine
1559-0100
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
Volume
44
Issue
2
Pages
326–333
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s12020-013-9924-z
PMID: 23526261
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Osteoporosis increases dramatically with age. About 40 % of women in developed countries will experience an osteoporosis-related fracture in the course of their lifetime, with men experiencing approximately one-third to one-half the risk of women. The "lipid hypothesis of osteoporosis" claims for a role of oxidized lipids as a contributing factor in osteoporosis. On the other hand, statins are supposed to exert anabolic effects on the bone, either through their lipid-lowering action or signal pathways that are independent of their effects on lipid levels. The epidemiological evidence seems to suggest that higher triglycerides may give some protection against fracture, although no association with reduced fracture risk has been reported between lipid-lowering drug (except statins) users and non-users. The epidemiological evidence for a role of statins in osteoporosis is strong, with a lower fracture risk ranging from 30 to 40 % in statin users versus non-users. However, some pitfalls inherent to observational studies (high heterogeneity, residual confounding, potential publication bias) and the lack of association in randomized trials suggest caution. At the moment, the evidence for a role of statins in prevention of osteoporosis is insufficient to recommend starting statin therapy with the aim to prevent osteoporosis.

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