Study debunks reports that statins can cause memory loss

NEW YORK, June 9 — Some previous studies and anecdotal reports have pointed to the possibility of memory lapses when taking the lipid-lowering drugs (LLDs) called statins, but a new, large-scale study reveals they do not seem to lead to short-term memory loss.

Researchers from Rutgers University and University of Pennsylvania studied nearly one million patients, comparing people taking statins with both those not taking statins and those taking nonstatin LLDs. They found that, while patients taking statins reported more memory loss in the 30-day period after starting the drugs than non-users, the same was true for those taking nonstatin LLDs, which have a completely different structure.

Their explanation is a likely “detection bias,” meaning that patients taking a new drug visit their doctor more frequently and are more aware of their health.

The study, which was published in JAMA Internal Medicine, focused on short-term memory because other studies have confirmed that statins improve long-term memory. — AFP-Relaxnews

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