New Guidelines For The Use of Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs

New Guidelines For The Use of Cholesterol-Lowering Drugs

Millions more Americans could end up taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs based on new recommendations from the nation's leading heart organizations. Diane and her guests discuss what the new guidelines could mean for patients, doctors and drug companies.

Twice as many Americans will be eligible for cholesterol-lowering statin drugs based on new guidelines from two leading cardiovascular associations. Recommendations from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology mark the biggest shift in heart disease prevention in nearly three decades. Statin use in a broader population has been controversial. Some doctors point to their great cholesterol-lowering benefits and their potential to reduce the risk of certain cancers. Others worry about exposing more patients to statins' side effects, including an increased risk of diabetes and muscle pain. Diane and her guests discuss controversial new cholesterol treatment guidelines.

Guests

Dr. Donald Lloyd-Jones

senior associate dean and chair of the Department of Preventive Medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. He was a member of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association task force that produced new treatment guidelines for cholesterol.

Dr. Allen Taylor

chief of cardiology for the MedStar Heart Institute at MedStar Washington Hospital Center and MedStar Georgetown University Hospital. He also formerly served on the American College of Cardiology Board of Governors.

Dr. Steven Nissen

chairman of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic.

Dr. Sumi Sexton

president of Premier Primary Care Physicians in Arlington, Virginia. She is also assistant professor of family medicine at the Georgetown University School of Medicine and an associate editor for the journal "American Family Physician."

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