Regular Statin Use Reduces Risk of Developing RA

September 14, 2010

Patients taking statins for lowering cholesterol may have a reduced risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, according to a study in PLos Medicine.

Patients taking statins for lowering cholesterol may have a reduced risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, according to a study in PLos Medicine.

Researchers Gabriel Chodick and team conducted a retrospective cohort study that included 1.8-million members of Maccabi Healthcare Services in Israel. The team sought to identify those who regularly took statins and did not have rheumatoid arthritis.

The researchers analyzed diagnostic codes to asses the incidence of newly diagnosed rheumatoid arthritis in this group between 1998 to 2007. They also examined any possible association between persistent statin use and the development of osteoarthritis.

The findings were that the unadjusted rate of rheumatoid arthritis among patients who did not persistently take statins was 51% higher than for patients who used statins for at least 80% of the follow-up period. They concluded that patients who persistently took statins had a lower risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, but more research in wider cohorts is necessary.