Experts say number of patients on statins could double with new guidelines

The American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology released new guidelines that some experts say could double the number of Americans taking cholesterol-lowering statins, although some patients may no longer be considered candidates for the therapy. Guideline panelists recommend that all adults between the ages of 40 and 75 whose estimated 10-year risk of heart disease is 7.5 or more should take a statin regardless of cholesterol levels, an increase over current recommendations. The guidelines suggest moving away from treating patients to achieve a specific LDL cholesterol level and advise physicians to focus on controlling certain risk factors for heart attack or stroke.

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