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Statin use tied to decreased acute pancreatitis severity

08 Sep 2018
Statin, a blood cholesterol-lowering medicine, reduces sharply in blood cholesterol levels among ACS patients.

Use of statins may reduce the severity of acute pancreatitis (AP) seen in the decrease of overall incidence of multisystem organ failure (MSOF) and new MSOF, suggests a recent study.

Adult patients with AP admitted in the Cleveland Clinic Health System between 2007 and 2014 were included in this historical cohort study. Electronic medical records were extracted to obtain all medication, clinical and outcomes data. To minimize selection bias, factors influencing statin use were included in a propensity model.

The authors matched patients on and off statins based on the propensity score to simulate a randomized controlled trial. Measured outcomes included pancreatitis severity (Revised Atlanta Classification), MSOF incidence, new MSOF, acute necrosis and death. Additional surrogate markers of severity were as follows: hospital length of stay, Bedside Index of Severity of Acute Pancreatitis (BISAP) and presence of systemic inflammatory response syndrome.

A total of 110 patients on statins at admission were matched with 210 individuals not on statins. The two groups had evenly matched known baseline factors that might influence statin use and severity of pancreatitis.

Patients in the statin group were less likely to develop MSOF, severe AP and necrosis. Lower in-hospital deaths were reported in the statin group vs nonusers, but the difference was not statistically significant (2 percent vs 4 percent; p=0.38).

“Prospective randomized controlled trials are needed to determine the efficacy of statin drugs in the treatment of AP,” the authors said.

“Statins possess anti-inflammatory properties and have a protective effect in certain inflammatory conditions. However, their effect on the natural history of pancreatitis is unknown,” they added.

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