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Statins protect against risk of first hospitalizations for infections

5 days ago

Use of statins may significantly reduce the risk of hospitalization for bacterial infections, with the protective effect similar in populations with or without diabetes, irrespective of cardiovascular events or other comorbidities, a study suggests.

Researchers examined the effect of current statin use on the risk of first hospitalizations due to bacterial infections in 128,207 patients with diabetes and in 3,304,906 nondiabetic individuals. None reported previous use of statins.

Cox proportional hazards regression analysis was used to estimate the hospitalization risk, with adjustments for age, gender, previous comorbidities, chronic renal failure, and prior or incident cardiovascular diseases.

A total of 37,222 hospitalizations for bacterial infections were reported during the 5-year follow-up, yielding an incidence rate of 2.08 per 1,000 person-years in the nondiabetic group (n=31,543) and 9.13 per 1,000 person-years in the diabetic group (n=5,679).

Diabetes was associated with a twofold increase in the 5-year risk of hospitalizations for bacterial infections (adjusted hazard ratio, 2.04; 95 percent CI, 1.97 to 2.10; p<0.0001). The risk declined by about 2.5 percent for each 1 month of statin use, with statins producing this risk-lowering effect to the same extent in individuals with or without diabetes.

Statin, a hydroxymethyl glutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase inhibitor, is commonly used as a lipid-lowering therapy in the primary or secondary prevention of cardiovascular events. It has also been shown to be beneficial in the prevention and treatment of bacterial infections due to the ‘pleiotropic’ effect of statins. The drugs modulate both the innate and the adaptive immune system, providing anti-inflammatory effects. Moreover, statins have potential direct inhibitory effects on pathogenic microorganisms. [Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis 2010;29:143–152; Pharmacol Res 2014;88:31–40; Lancet Infect Dis 2006;6:242–248; Kidney Int 2003;63:12–23 1-8]

The current data reinforce a role of statins in reducing the risk of hospitalization for bacterial infections, supporting the extended use of such drugs beyond the primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular events in individuals with or without diabetes, researchers said.

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Most Read Articles
19 days ago
Regardless of dosing, nonvitamin K antagonist oral anticoagulants (NOACs) are more effective than warfarin for atrial fibrillation and safer in Asian than in non-Asian populations, a new meta-analysis shows.
7 days ago
Nonalcoholic fatty liver diseases (NAFLD) and serum concentrations of alanine transaminase (ALT), aspartate transaminase (AST), gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT) and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) are independent predictors of incident type 2 diabetes, a new prospective study shows.
6 days ago
There appears to be no evidence supporting associations between physical activity and asthma control level, spirometric measurements and quality of life in children and adolescents with asthma, according to a study from Brazil.
6 days ago
There is a growing number of targeted therapies being approved for use in cancer therapy in the home setting, and this poses a potential risk among family member and caregivers, particularly those of reproductive risk age, a recent study suggests.