The medical science world, despite it dealing in very precise and accurate facts, at least hopefully, often seems to discover that some previous assumptions were false. For example, a team of researchers published a paper in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery stating that taking statins improves aid bypass surgery odds.
- The study is a meta-analysis, looking at the results of other studies
- The team performing the research was based at multiple hospitals and universities
- Statins were viewed as harmful before and after a surgical procedure
- In the case of coronary artery bypass grafting, satins lead to reduce chances of complications and to improve chances of survival
- Researchers are still looking into their effects on other surgeries
For those of us lucky enough not to know anyone using the medication, statins are a form of medicine given to patients that need to lower their cholesterol levels. It is also known to lower the chances for heart attack, stroke, and even death from heart disease by somewhere around 25% to 35%.
Up until this point, doctors recommended that patients on statins stop taking them prior to the surgical procedure, and not continue taking for after the procedure.
However, thanks to the meta-analysis performed by the team of doctors from the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, and the University of Florida in Gainesville, it turns out that that is the opposite of what doctors should recommend.
By reviewing all July 2015 articles related to statin use before and after the surgery from the Medline database, the team reached the conclusion that statin use before and after coronary artery bypass grafting can lead not only to a much lower chance of developing complications during and after the surgery, but also to reduce the overall risk of death during and after the surgery.
Being only a meta-analysis, the researchers weren’t able to determine why exactly the cholesterol medicine helps, but they do have a theory.
Since major operations in which anesthesia is involved leads to the patient’s body suffering a strong inflammatory reaction, the statins, which have very powerful anti-inflammatory properties might fight said inflammation and improve chances of recovery.
Further studies have to be performed however, as the researchers still have to see how statins manifest in the course of other types of surgical procedures, as well as if there actually are any side-effects to taking statins before and after surgery.
Although they suspect they might, scientists still want to see if statins are also helpful in reducing risk of heart attack, stroke, or kidney failure in other surgical procedures.