Recent rapid responses

Rapid responses are electronic letters to the editor. They enable our users to debate issues raised in articles published on bmj.com. Although a selection of rapid responses will be included as edited readers' letters in the weekly print issue of the BMJ, their first appearance online means that they are published articles. If you need the url (web address) of an individual response, perhaps for citation purposes, simply click on the response headline and copy the url from the browser window.

Displaying 1-3 out of 3 published

13 April 2002

Sir

Has a 'change of role for statins' anything to do with their potential obsolescence in the face of growing evidence that fats, and cholesterol, pose little harm to heart function and may in fact have a greater protective overall effect than that of statins?

Regards

John H.

Competing interests: None declared

John P Heptonstall, Director of the Morley Acupuncture Clinic and Complementary Therapy Centre

Leeds LS27 8EG

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Statins as the new aspirin

Sir

The real chances of benefit for the patient taking statins, according the figures from Heart Protect Study are:

- 32 patients are needed to treat with statins in order to prevent 1 CHD event over 5 years

- 65 patients are needed to treat with statins in order to prevent 1 stroke over 5 years

- 82 patients are needed to treat with statins in order to prevent 1 CHD death over 5 years

- 366 patients are needed to treat with statins in order to prevent 1 death by other vascular causes over 5 years

- 58 patients are needed to treat with statins in order to prevent 1 death by any causes over 5 years

1. Medical Research Council/British Heart Foundation Heart Protection Study. Press release. Life-saver: World’s largest cholesterol-lowering trial reveals massive benefits for high-risk patients. At http://www.ctsu.ox.ac.uk/~hps/pr.shtml

2. Kmietowicz Z. Statins are the new aspirin, Oxford researchers say. BMJ 2001; 323: 1145

Carlos Monteiro, secretary
Infarct Combat Project
secretary@infarctcombat.org
http://www.infarctcombat.org

Competing interests: None declared

Carlos Monteiro, Secretary

Infarct Combat Project

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6 April 2002

One of the perils of writing anything for the BMJ is the time lag between writing and appearance. My original electronic submission into the withdrawal of cerivastatin (1), stated that it was withdrawn "earlier this year", with the delay in its paper appearance this had been changed to "in 2000". (2) Of course, it should have said "in 2001".

1. http://bmj.com/cgi/content/full/323/7322/1145#responses accessed on 5th April 2002.

2. Anton C. National Institute for Clinical Excellence should assess statins. BMJ 2002;324:789.

Competing interests: None declared

Christopher Anton, Administrative Co-ordinator

West Midlands Centre for Adverse Drug Reaction Reporting, B18 7QH

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