Complications with Statins

Posted by jackj @jackj, May 2, 2018

This may be of use to others taking statin drugs. I had a 5-way CABG in Sep 2015. Shortly after that, my cardiologist prescribed atorvastatin, 10 mg, once per day. My cholesterol numbers were all in the acceptable ranges, and they hadn't changed, and I resisted taking any at all, but I began the regimen. In August 2017, my PCP convinced me I should be on a higher dosage. I did argue against it again because in my post-CABG studies, so many reports, books, etc recommended against almost any at all, but I had had no difficulties with the lower dosage, I deferred to my doctor, and I began to take 40 mg/day. Early in 2018, a number of symptoms became evident: tiredness/fatigue, occasional shortness of breath, occasional lightheadedness, lower and thoracic back pain, itching (mostly from the chest up), frequent headaches (mild), and worst of all, eye difficulties–watery, blurry, darkening of vision, lots of floaters–so much so that reading became uncomfortable and at times difficult. These conditions continued to worsen. I thought about this constantly. I studied my diet, my schedule, my activities, none of which I had changed. I had always taken the drug before bedtime, and it dawned on me finally that since I felt worse in the mornings and better by the end of day, perhaps there was a connection. And since the only change I could see was the statin dosage, I decided to cut it back–at least to 20 mg. And almost immediately, my symptoms lessened. After 4 days, the improvement is dramatic. I almost feel normal again. Furthermore, perhaps rashly, I decided to return to the original 10 mg dosage. I will keep at this for a couple weeks to verify the conclusion, and I will discuss with both my PCP and my cardiologist. But I am convinced, especially with all the literature I've perused, that statins are not for me. I caution all on statins to research this thoroughly. By the way, the higher dosage did lower my cholesterol values, but other vitamin deficiencies are evident in my latest blood panel, and statins may also be the cause of those.

@kishanvasekar

I survived severe heart attack about 7 years back.Surgery to remove clot, kidney failure, 35 days in ER and 4 days on ventilator support left me bedridden for 3 months.I picked up courage , prayed and prayed and recovered .It is almost miracle.Then as Chemical Engineer , I had to retire but I decided to study Heart Disease in detail including Alternate systems of medicine Ayurveda.I have developed simple formula , MYSPEED ie Medittaion, Yoga , Smile and Sleep well,Pranyam ( Indian system of breathing ) , Exercise , Entertainment and Diet control to prevent , cure and even reverse Heart disease.
After 2 years of intensive medication ,I started worried after getting muscle weakness of extreme type and looked for main culprit.It was Statin dose.I felt of developing Friendship with Cholesterol and worked consistently to reduce dependence on Statins.Ultimately I Stopped it about 4 years back.
I belive that Cholesterol by itself is friend and becomes foe only if in excess.So almost 80 % of heart patients can reduce Statin or eventually Stop and lead Statin free life like me.
If you are committed and can follow MYSPEED formula with BMW ie Balanced , Moderate and Worryfree life style you can join the discussion.I will be sharing my experiences as we progress.Thnaks

Jump to this post

@kishanvasekar thanks for all your articles on statins and cholesterol I had a triple by-pass in 1996 I have been on statins since then it is our livers that makes cholesterol for our bodies but mine over produces so I take a small dose now but do about all the things you suggest A plant based diet with meat occasionally Walking is very important,as other types of exercise I have just started meditation but believe in it and being a God fearing women you need to pray day and night

REPLY
@kishanvasekar

I survived severe heart attack about 7 years back.Surgery to remove clot, kidney failure, 35 days in ER and 4 days on ventilator support left me bedridden for 3 months.I picked up courage , prayed and prayed and recovered .It is almost miracle.Then as Chemical Engineer , I had to retire but I decided to study Heart Disease in detail including Alternate systems of medicine Ayurveda.I have developed simple formula , MYSPEED ie Medittaion, Yoga , Smile and Sleep well,Pranyam ( Indian system of breathing ) , Exercise , Entertainment and Diet control to prevent , cure and even reverse Heart disease.
After 2 years of intensive medication ,I started worried after getting muscle weakness of extreme type and looked for main culprit.It was Statin dose.I felt of developing Friendship with Cholesterol and worked consistently to reduce dependence on Statins.Ultimately I Stopped it about 4 years back.
I belive that Cholesterol by itself is friend and becomes foe only if in excess.So almost 80 % of heart patients can reduce Statin or eventually Stop and lead Statin free life like me.
If you are committed and can follow MYSPEED formula with BMW ie Balanced , Moderate and Worryfree life style you can join the discussion.I will be sharing my experiences as we progress.Thnaks

Jump to this post

Thnaks .Wish you very Best.Suggest your walking , Exercising In Sunlight to the maximum extent possible.Intense Prayers from the base of heart are always answered and Good for Heart.Be Happy , Smile and Spread Happiness.Blessings

REPLY
@kanaazpereira

Hello @kishanvasekar,

Thank you for taking the time to share your story, and for your participation on Connect. I am happy to see that you have found many different discussions to partake in, and to know that the changes you've made are working for you. Keep in mind though, that everyone is different and their health situation may vary from your own. Members should not advise other members to stop taking their medication. Please see the first rule of Connect’s Community Guidelines https://connect.mayoclinic.org/community-guidelines/ The guidelines state:
1. Be careful about giving out medical advice

The value of a community like Mayo Clinic Connect, is in meeting people who have experienced similar issues, share information, encourage one another to learn more about their health, and for some, to take that information to their health care providers.
Mayo Clinic advises that people consult with their current care provider before making any changes to their existing medication or treatment plan. When considering complementary or alternative treatments, or lifestyle changes that can affect one's health, it is best to be open-minded, and learn about the potential benefits and risks.

I also thought you might be interested in reading this information from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF):
– There was insufficient evidence that statins benefit adults over age 75 with no past cardiovascular disease.

– However, it endorsed the use of statins in adults 40 – 75 years of age, without a history of cardiovascular disease, who have one or more risk factors for it (such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or smoking) or a 10% risk of having a heart attack, stroke, or similar event within the next 10 years. This is a "B" recommendation which means that there is a high certainty of substantial benefit from statin use in preventing heart disease.

– USPSTF guidelines concluded that over all, potential harm from low and moderate doses of statins was small. https://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page/Document/UpdateSummaryFinal/statin-use-in-adults-preventive-medication1?ds=1&s=statins

@kishanvasekar, there is so much confusing information and debate about statins, which can make potential patients hesitant to take the medication. I am not a medical professional and cannot offer medical advice; however, I am concerned that people may be more worried about side effects and discomfort now, and not look at the effect high cholesterol may have on their health in the future.
I sincerely hope fellow Connect members and statin users – @yoanne @thankful @lynnkay1956 @fourof5zs @davelindemann46 @luckyg @botexas @mcphee @gibbs – will join this discussion, too; I'd really like to hear their experiences and insights about statins.

Jump to this post

Thanks.I have referred many websites , will revisit this also.My suggestion, Walk in morning before breakfast , in Sunlight if possible , Plant based Diet , Yoga and Meditation.God Bless

REPLY

Lots of food for thought recently, which I appreciate. Some additional status info: I haven't been outside much the last six months, but I've always been an outdoor person so I doubt that a few months of reduced activity caused the large Vitamin D drop. But in any case, I'm working to restore my previous outdoor time along with the Vitamin D supplements. I exercise almost every day, aerobically 3 days a week, weight training in between another 3 days (so 1 day off). I further streamlined my diet compared to what I had been eating, which means now mostly vegetables, low quantities of meats (all lean, lots of fish), no fried foods, absolutely NO sweets. Kind of a combo of the Paleo diet and the Mediterranean diet, and I've been on this diet since shortly after my surgery (2.5 yrs). I've always worked to eliminate stress, and since I'm retired, I'm even more stress-free. I'm not a believer in prayer (open-minded about it's effectiveness) so that's about the only thing I haven't tried. That and Ayurvedic meditation, which I'm also open to.

I had mentioned that my symptoms lessened almost immediately after lowering my statin dosage. Still true (and still taking 10 mg per day vs. 40 mg per day before), tho I continue to have vision issues. I have recently completed an eye exam, and my eyes are fine. Still trying to figure that one out. I see my PCP again in 2-3 weeks so we will discuss that. The vision varies almost daily, which tells me my diet, or meds, or routine, et al, is making this happen. However, none of these changes much on a daily basis. The search continues.

Liked by thankful

REPLY
@jackj

Lots of food for thought recently, which I appreciate. Some additional status info: I haven't been outside much the last six months, but I've always been an outdoor person so I doubt that a few months of reduced activity caused the large Vitamin D drop. But in any case, I'm working to restore my previous outdoor time along with the Vitamin D supplements. I exercise almost every day, aerobically 3 days a week, weight training in between another 3 days (so 1 day off). I further streamlined my diet compared to what I had been eating, which means now mostly vegetables, low quantities of meats (all lean, lots of fish), no fried foods, absolutely NO sweets. Kind of a combo of the Paleo diet and the Mediterranean diet, and I've been on this diet since shortly after my surgery (2.5 yrs). I've always worked to eliminate stress, and since I'm retired, I'm even more stress-free. I'm not a believer in prayer (open-minded about it's effectiveness) so that's about the only thing I haven't tried. That and Ayurvedic meditation, which I'm also open to.

I had mentioned that my symptoms lessened almost immediately after lowering my statin dosage. Still true (and still taking 10 mg per day vs. 40 mg per day before), tho I continue to have vision issues. I have recently completed an eye exam, and my eyes are fine. Still trying to figure that one out. I see my PCP again in 2-3 weeks so we will discuss that. The vision varies almost daily, which tells me my diet, or meds, or routine, et al, is making this happen. However, none of these changes much on a daily basis. The search continues.

Jump to this post

hello. Does anyone know how The Mayo Clinic compares to The Baskin Palmer Eye Institute for a person who is going blind? Should I go to Baskin Palmer as vs The Mayo clinic? I would really appreciate your feedback. I am thanking all for any information on this anf I thank you. Peach414144

REPLY
@jackj

Lots of food for thought recently, which I appreciate. Some additional status info: I haven't been outside much the last six months, but I've always been an outdoor person so I doubt that a few months of reduced activity caused the large Vitamin D drop. But in any case, I'm working to restore my previous outdoor time along with the Vitamin D supplements. I exercise almost every day, aerobically 3 days a week, weight training in between another 3 days (so 1 day off). I further streamlined my diet compared to what I had been eating, which means now mostly vegetables, low quantities of meats (all lean, lots of fish), no fried foods, absolutely NO sweets. Kind of a combo of the Paleo diet and the Mediterranean diet, and I've been on this diet since shortly after my surgery (2.5 yrs). I've always worked to eliminate stress, and since I'm retired, I'm even more stress-free. I'm not a believer in prayer (open-minded about it's effectiveness) so that's about the only thing I haven't tried. That and Ayurvedic meditation, which I'm also open to.

I had mentioned that my symptoms lessened almost immediately after lowering my statin dosage. Still true (and still taking 10 mg per day vs. 40 mg per day before), tho I continue to have vision issues. I have recently completed an eye exam, and my eyes are fine. Still trying to figure that one out. I see my PCP again in 2-3 weeks so we will discuss that. The vision varies almost daily, which tells me my diet, or meds, or routine, et al, is making this happen. However, none of these changes much on a daily basis. The search continues.

Jump to this post

Hi Peach. Figuring out who/what Institution to trust for any specific health concern is BRUTAL. I did the search for needed heart surgery a few months ago and hit brick walls, obfuscation, and anger when I asked qualifying questions from a number of surgical groups and surgical centers. I was thoroughly rejected by a local hospital, complete with a nssty letter from their attorey who siaaid I was not welcome at their hospital. I have no great answers to give you except to research the US Health News re: specific Institutions like the Mayo Clinic: https://health.usnews.com/best-hospitals/area/mn/mayo-clinic-6610451 At the end of my lengthy process, I bet my life with the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota due to the Institution's reputation, not because I was able to get details about any specific suregeons. My damn difficult surgery went well…over 10 hours on the table. BTW, Mayo/Rochester is like a 5 Star Hotel…pretty incredible facilities and talent all over the place…even the food was quite good. I empathize with you regarding your research.

REPLY

Hi @johnjms,

Thank you for all the support and information you are offering. Please note that I removed your personal email and address from this public discussion. Posts to the discussion board are public, and we don't want you getting unwanted spam etc. We recommend sharing personal contact information by private message as it is a secure, private option.
Thank you so much for understanding.

REPLY
Please login or register to post a reply.