Statins increase the risk of Cataract

A recent Canadian study has reported that people prescribed Statins- drugs used to reduce cholesterol, have a 50%  increase in the likelihood of developing age related cataract. The report also found that Type II (mature onset) Diabetics (who already have an increased risk) are at an even greater risk.

Because raised cholesterol does not co-exist well with Diabetes, many (perhaps most) Diabetics are on cholesterol lowering medicines.

The increase in cataract has been explained by the crystalline lens membrane’s need for a high cholesterol  level to ensure proper cell development and therefore normal clarity.

This was a large study (about 6400 people), so the results are pretty clear, but commentators would agree that the impact of a cataract (which is fixable) on as person’s quality of life is much less, compared to a stroke or a heart attack, and many people in this age group would have likely have developed cataract anyway.

The full article can be seen here (you may be required to register and login).

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