This study was published in QJM 1999 Jul;92(7):387-94
Study title and authors:
Atorvastatin compared with simvastatin-based therapies in the management of severe familial hyperlipidaemias.
Wierzbicki AS, Lumb PJ, Semra Y, Chik G, Christ ER, Crook MA.
Department of Chemical Pathology, St Thomas' Hospital, London, UK. Anthony.Wierzbicki@ukcl.ac.uk
This study can be accessed at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10627888
The study investigated the side effects caused by statin therapy (Lipitor). Patients unable to tolerate previous statin therapy were excluded from the study. The trial lasted for 12 weeks and included 201 "patients" with alleged high cholesterol.
The study found:
(a) 36% of patients had to withdraw from the trial because of side effects.
(b) 7% of patients suffered from diarrhoea.
(c) 5% of patients developed an erythematous rash (An erythematous rash is characterized by redness resulting from skin inflammation surrounding a patch of skin where a rash is located).
(d) 4% of patients suffered from joint pains.
After only 12 weeks of statin (Lipitor) therapy, over a third of the patients had to withdraw from the trial because of side effects.
Useful book: How Statin Drugs Really Lower Cholesterol: And Kill You One Cell at a Time