The raison d'etre of this website is to provide you with hard scientific information which may help you make informed decisions in your quest for health (so far I have blogged concise summaries of over 1,500 scientific studies and have had three books published).

My research is mainly focused on the effects of cholesterol, saturated fat and statin drugs on health. If you know anyone who is worried about their cholesterol levels and heart disease, or has been told to take statin drugs you could send them a link to this website, and to my statin or cholesterol or heart disease books.

David Evans

Independent Health Researcher

Friday, 18 May 2012

Statins and fibrates are associated with an increased risk of peripheral neuropathy

This study was published at the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health 2004 Dec;58(12):1047-51

Study title and authors:
Lipid lowering drugs prescription and the risk of peripheral neuropathy: an exploratory case-control study using automated databases.
Corrao G, Zambon A, Bertù L, Botteri E, Leoni O, Contiero P.
Dipartimento di Statistica, Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Via Bicocca degli Arcimboldi 8, Edificio U7, 20126 Milan, Italy.

This study can be accessed at:

Peripheral neuropathy describes damage to the peripheral nervous system, the vast communications network that transmits information from the brain and spinal cord (the central nervous system) to every other part of the body.

Symptoms are related to the type of affected nerve and may be seen over a period of days, weeks, or years. Muscle weakness is the most common symptom of motor nerve damage. Other symptoms may include painful cramps and fasciculations (uncontrolled muscle twitching visible under the skin), muscle loss, bone degeneration, and changes in the skin, hair, and nails. These more general degenerative changes also can result from sensory or autonomic nerve fiber loss.

This study explored the association between prescription of cholesterol lowering drugs and the risk of peripheral neuropathy. 2,040 patients with peripheral neuropathy and 36,041 controls were included in the study.

The study found:
(a) Those that took statins had a 19% increased risk of peripheral neuropathy.
(b) Those that took fibrates had a 49% increased risk of peripheral neuropathy.
(c) Those that had higher doses of statins and fibrates had a higher risk of peripheral neuropathy.

This study shows that both statins and fibrates are associated with an increased risk of peripheral neuropathy.