New research suggests statins could significantly reduce the risk of mortality and stroke in people with dementia.
The study, presented at the European Academy of Neurology Congress in Norway this week, analysed the association between the use of statins in the three years before dementia and risk of death and first ischaemic stroke in 44,920 patients registered in the Swedish Dementia Registry (2008-2015).
It found ever users of statins (n=16,791) had a lower risk of all-cause mortality (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR] 0.78; 95% CI 0.74-0.83) compared to matched non-users (n=16,791). There was also a significant effect on the risk of stroke (aHR 0.73; 95% CI 0.64-0.93).
Stratified analysis showed a protective effect on survival for patients younger than 75 years (aHR 0.73; 95% CI 0.62-0.86) and in men (aHR 0.74; 95% CI 0.68-0.81). Women and older patients also benefited to a lesser extent, with 17 per cent and 20 per cent reduced mortality risk, respectively. Use in patients with vascular dementia was linked with a 29 per cent lower mortality risk.
“Our results are encouraging and suggest that patients with dementia benefit from statins to a similar extent than patients without dementia,” said lead author Dr Sara Garcia-Ptacek from the Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.