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Lowering Cholesterol: the Side Effects of "Statins"

Updated on January 1, 2017
DzyMsLizzy profile image

Though she urges folks with health issues to see their doctors, as she is not in the medical field.Medical topics fascinate Liz nonetheless

Statins Are a Widely Prescribed Class of Drugs

The most commonly prescribed use of these drugs is to treat high cholesterol. Known by many names, some of which are Zocor™, Crestor™ and Lipitor™.

There are many more, but those three are probably the ones about which you hear the most because they are so heavily advertised on TV and in print media.

Do you know what your pills are doing to you?
Do you know what your pills are doing to you? | Source

What Is the Harm?

Too many people blindly and trustingly believe, "If my doctor prescribed it, it must be safe and will help me get well." Sadly, that is not always true.

There are hundreds of thousands of assorted drugs and treatments, and doctors are hard-pressed to keep up with them all, along with all the other things they must continually study to keep their licenses current.

All too often, the doctors' knowledge is limited to the brochures and slick sales pitches produced by the large pharmaceutical manufacturing corporations. The doctors themselves are believing, just as blindly as their patents, that surely, if the drug has passed the testing stage and been approved for marketing, that it is safe.

Not so fast. The next time you see an ad on TV for some drug--any drug--listen very carefully to all the disclaimers about possible harm in the form of side effects. The list differs from drug to drug, but it is there on each and every ad, required by law.

The drug companies don't like this--you'll also notice the disclaimer is spoken quite rapidly, in a low-toned, bland voice, often at just a tad less volume than the background music for the ad, while distracting visuals of happy, healthy people play on. They don't really want you to hear or pay attention to this long list of possible side effects.

These side effects can run the gamut from runny noses to death. And that last, my friends, is nothing to sneeze at. When I hear them rattling off that list, my personal reaction, (should I ever develop the problem the drug is intended to treat), is, "Never mind--I'll just keep the original problem."

What is the harm statins can really cause? The article linked at right gives an excellent rundown of the ugly details, including how "Big Pharma" cheats on its studies, by manipulating statistics in their favor.

Where Does Cholesterol Come From?

Cholesterol comes from two main sources: the body manufactures what it needs on its own in the liver (a certain amount is needed). The body needs this compound for several functions, including producing hormones, brain function, and dissolving fats from the bloodstream by means of bile acids, and maintaining cell membranes.

The rest comes from our diets. Only foods of animal origin contain cholesterol. This includes all meats, (Yes, Virginia, all poultry counts as meat), fish, including and especially shellfish, eggs and dairy products.

This means that lacto-ovo vegetarians do consume at least some cholesterol, depending upon how much dairy and eggs they consume. Vegans do not take in any cholesterol in their diets. Since the body is able to make all it needs, there is no need to supplement cholesterol via the diet: hence all the problems we find with "too much of a good thing" when we visit the doctor.

By now we've all become familiar with the differences: HDL and LDL types; HDL being the 'good' kind, and LDL being the 'bad' kind. This is easily remembered by thinking of the "L" at the beginning of LDL as standing for "lazy."

Now, What's Wrong With Those Statins?

I hate to disillusion you about your physician's competence, but the sad truth is, the vast majority of teaching universities and their affiliated hospitals are funded at least in part, and sometimes heavily, by the drug-pushing "Big Pharma" corporations.

The unfortunate result is that doctors are indoctrinated (dare I say, brainwashed?) into a culture of pushing drugs at problems instead of trying to actually fix the underlying condition with holistic methods, such as diet and exercise.

Exercise is a major factor in lowering cholesterol
Exercise is a major factor in lowering cholesterol | Source

The ads discussed earlier, (as applied specifically to the statins), usually include somewhere in that long list of disclaimers a statement along the lines of, "...in combination with proper diet and exercise...."

In truth, proper diet and exercise alone are probably more responsible for treating the condition of a too-high cholesterol reading than the drug, if the patient actually changes their diet and commits to exercise.

Just as guilty as the doctors are their patients, who have grown lazy, and instead of exercising and eating right would rather continue to eat junk and be couch potatoes, washing down their bad habits with a handy pill in the hopes that it will absolve them of the effects of their lifestyles.

Sorry, it doesn't work that way. That list of side effects is horrific; and I find the warning that you need to go for "...frequent blood tests to check your liver function.." to be a very scary thing indeed! In other words, these drugs can harm and even shut down the very organ responsible for making and controlling your cholesterol.

They are pushing a drug to fix a problem that the body itself can fix, given cooperation by the inhabitant of said body, and that drug is capable of destroying the body's ability to perform a particular function, so that we will remain forever dependent upon said drug. Talk about job security!

The pharmaceutical industry does not create cures; it creates customers.

— Anon.

Partial List of Side Effects of Statins

muscle soreness
fatigue
type 2 diabetes
liver damage
rashes
increased blood sugar
nausea
constipation
diarrhea
neurological side effects
drowsiness
cognitive/memory impairment

Buried Side Effects

These are the truly frightening ones--the ones they'd rather you not know about, or consider. Every time you are given a prescription medication these days, you are handed a sheaf of papers explaining "everything" about that medication: what it is used for, how, why and when to take it, it's trade name as well as its generic name, and that long, long list of side effects.

Now, to be fair, the length of that list is to some extent the fault of the litigious society we have become, with lawyers ever at the ready to sue the pants off anyone perceived to have caused a problem, however small. A small minority of the effects on those lists are required to be there by law, because it might have happened a single time during test trials.

Nonetheless, if it happened even once, it still happened, and you must be advised. The next thing to note, however, is that the list is incomplete, and says so. It refers you for 'further information' to read the pamphlet that came with the medicine. However, that is not given to you--it is behind the counter, for it came with the bulk supply to the pharmacy.

You need to be pro-active, and do your own research. Luckily, in this day of the Internet, that is relatively easy to do. Just be sure to check your sources, and don't believe everything from the first link the search engine hands you.

Especially be wary of any studies by drug companies themselves. Very few such studies have been done by a third party, using independent laboratories for testing. No, the drug companies either do their own testing in house, or pay a testing agency to do a study that will put their product in a good light.

Remember to follow the money trail when evaluating a study's veracity.

Beware of drug-company-funded tests
Beware of drug-company-funded tests | Source

I Speak From Second-Hand Experience

My husband was prescribed some of these drugs after undergoing a coronary bypass graft back in 2001. At first, everything seemed fine, but as they kept him on these drugs for a period of about 4 years, we began to notice increasing problems with his memory. (That comes under the "cognitive/memory" issues listed in the table above.)

In fact, he was taking a scary preview-trip down Alzheimer's Lane! Remember, Alzheimer's Disease is about losing cognitive function, and it is progressive. It is not about forgetting your keys, or managing to lock yourself out of the house. It is, rather, things like forgetting what your keys are for--as in not remembering their function, not simply forgetting which key opens which lock--although that could be a precursor.

"Oh, my goodness!  Where am I?" Memory loss is a scary side-effect.
"Oh, my goodness! Where am I?" Memory loss is a scary side-effect. | Source

The Effects are Cumulative

You hear stories of people wandering out the door and being found a mile or two from where they live with no idea why or how they got there, or even knowing where they are. That is Alzheimer's Disease, and my husband was beginning to see some of those warning signs. He'd go down the hall, and not know why he was there.

Right away, I tackled the papers from the pharmacy, and sure enough, right near the end of the list, far past where the doctor probably bothers to read, there it was: "memory impairment" as a possible side effect. I then hit the Internet, and found further evidence to support that. We mentioned it to his doctor, who brushed it off, as if disbelieving it, but we convinced him to change hubby to a different medication, (though it was still a statin)!

Things did not improve, and in fact, began to get worse. We again confronted the doctor, and this time, I was armed with my research papers, the relevant points marked with yellow highlighter pen. I shoved them under his nose, and said, "See: it says right here...!" The doctor then finally took him off the statins, and gave him a different medication.

The effects, according to the paperwork (I call them "scare sheets"), are supposedly temporary, and should reverse themselves once the medication is stopped. Unfortunately, he was on them for too long a time before we convinced the doctors, and there was some reversal, but his memory for some things is still impaired some 10 years later.

He's regained his ability to know where he's going and why, but he constantly asks me things such as, "When is my appointment?" When I've already told him 5 times in 2 days. As a person who in his younger days held a genius-level IQ, and had a photographic memory, you can imagine his frustration at this state of affairs.

Has It Happened To You Or Your Loved Ones?

Have you, or anyone you know, been adversely affected by Statins?

See results

How Do You Know It's a Statin?

First, ask your doctor. Then, ask if there is something else that will work as well or better, and with fewer side effects. If you didn't ask, or he didn't tell you, check the label. I won't say "all" of them, but a many of them clue you in with the letter combination of, "or" at the end of their name; Zocor,™ Lipitor,™ Crestor™, etc.

Disclaimer:

Please note that I am not a doctor, nor am I employed anywhere in the health care field.

The statements I've made here are based upon my own experiences with my husband, my own research, and are not intended as medical advice for anyone else.

Always discuss your health conditions with your own doctor or other health care practitioner, as everyone is different, and treatments must be tailored to the individual.

© 2012 Liz Elias

What is Your Experience?

Submit a Comment

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
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    Liz Elias 3 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, smcopywrite,

    Thanks very much for your lovely comment. I'm most pleased you found the article useful.

  • smcopywrite profile image

    smcopywrite 3 years ago from all over the web

    This a remarkable article and wonderfully put together. Useful info is always appreciated. Thanks for sharing something we can all use. knowledge it power! nicely done

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 4 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, travel_man1971 ;

    Thank you; I'm glad you liked the article. However, I must again point out that 1) "statins" are NOT over-the-counter drugs, they are by doctor's prescription only, and 2) I am not a doctor or health care professional of any type. I simply reported on our experience with these drugs.

    The reason any drug requires a prescription is because there ARE many possible adverse side-effects, and a doctor must be in charge of when and if to order them.

    That said, while you should always be a strong advocate for your own health care, you must do so in cooperation with your doctor, of whatever type you choose, be it a traditional western medicine physician, holistic practitioner or an eastern medicine specialist.

    Thank you very much for stopping by and commenting.

  • travel_man1971 profile image

    Ireno Alcala 4 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

    Thanks for the warning. I will resort to natural treatment rather than those over-the-counter drugs.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 4 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi, there, fpherj48,

    Thank you so very much for your high praise. I’m glad you were able to get off those horrid drugs, and found something that works as well or better and without the side effects! You are living proof that “alternative medicine” works.

    The main trouble is, natural remedies cannot be patented, so no money (read huge profits) can be made from their sale, hence, “Big Pharma” is in the business of pressuring the FDA to ignore and/or discredit these treatments that have been around for centuries. (That’s not to say that ALL ancient remedies are safe or effective--there was plenty of quack medicine around in the Victorian era and before…) but on the whole, nature provides the remedy for the ailment.

    There is a wild plant that often grows very near to stinging nettles, for instance, and it is the antidote for the sting. (I wish I could recall the name of said plant…)

    Many thanks for the votes; glad you enjoyed the article!

  • fpherj48 profile image

    Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Dzy....Excellent hub....very well written and easy to comprehend. Important stuff for people to know! Yes, I did experience unpleasant side effects while taking "provostatin." Most notable was severe muscle aches. Having been of the athletic-type from my teen years, I always had good to excellent muscle tone and form.

    After 2 weeks on statins, I couldn't go up my stairs without severe leg pain, especially my thigh muscles, which would ache so terribly, I would have to sit on the top step and massage my thighs for at least 5 minutes. Suspicious, I read thru the printed material and found the precise symptoms I'd experienced.

    For experimental purposes, I stopped the statins. In 2 days, the side effect was GONE. For the past 4 years, I have taken a nightly dose of Red Yeast Rice (a natural substance)......my numbers have never been better. The statins are only one Rx I have eliminated and successfully replaced with holistic replacements. With in depth research, common sense and trial....it CAN be done. UP++++

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 4 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi there, FlourishAnyway!

    You make a good point. There are plenty of over-the-counter remedies and nutritional supplements which are not tested, nor do they contain any warning statements. The only thing the label is likely to say is wording to the effect of, "Not tested or evaluated by the FDA."

    I'm sorry to hear your mom and aunt had problems with these medications as well. These side effects are indeed subtle, and can sneak up on you after time.

    Many thanks for your input; I'm glad you liked the article.

  • FlourishAnyway profile image

    FlourishAnyway 4 years ago from USA

    Thanks for sharing your story. I am sorry this happened to your husband. Interestingly, the over-the-counter supplement red yeast rice contains the same basic properties that prescription statins do without all the prescription fine print, so people can also run into problems that way. Both my aunt and mother suddenly experience issues with statins after successfully being on them for years. Good hub!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 4 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, PegCole17,

    Thanks for sharing your experience. I'm glad you were able to reduce your cholesterol naturally. Those drugs are scary. I hope your husband fares better with his course of these drugs.

    Thanks for commenting--I'm glad you found the article useful.

  • PegCole17 profile image

    Peg Cole 4 years ago from Dallas, Texas

    Very important information here. Thank you for sharing your story and for letting others know the potential dangers in taking statins. When I read over the pages of possible side effects that come with prescription medications, I'm often tempted not to take them. When my doctor prescribed Crestor for me I never took it, deciding instead to try and lower my cholesterol through my diet. It has dropped a few points, and thankfully, it wasn't that far above the range for "normal". Sorry to hear about your hubby's reaction and I hope that his memory has returned. My hubby has been on cholesterol lowering meds for years and the statistics are frightening.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 4 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, Vickiw,

    Thanks very much for adding that information about the book. I'll look into it, for sure, and probably recommend it to all the doctors I come across... LOL. I'm pleased you liked my article. Sadly, this piece was inspired by my husband's issues with these medications.

  • profile image

    Vickiw 4 years ago

    I read a book recently, by Dr Stephen Sinatra, called 'the great cholesterol myth.' He is a cardiologist, and totally does not recommend statins. I downloaded it from amazon. It is well worthwhile reading, and totally changed my perspective on this topic. Very interesting and informative facts you have here !

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, jmwe29,

    It is very scary, indeed. I'm so sorry to hear about your mother; that is truly tragic. I appreciate you sharing your story, and I will check out your link as well.

    Thanks very much for linking to my article. It is important to educate people, and more so to wake them up to learn to educate themselves instead of regarding doctors as near gods.

  • profile image

    jmwe29 5 years ago

    Scary, isn't it? I put up my own page at squidoo on our experiences with one of these statin drugs and how it has affected our mother - http://www.squidoo.com/cholesterol-medications-and... The whole thing has just made us sick- she now has about half her memory function and is wheelchair bound because of this stuff. Thank you for doing your part in educating the public to the dangers. I will put a link in to your page here.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi there, Minnetonka Twin,

    It is a terrible dilemma, is it not? I feel for you, and I hope your doctors will work with you to find different treatment options. In my husband's case, he made them put all 'statins' on his allergy alert list, so they won't give him any more of them. It was a scary trip down memory-loss lane.

    You are welcome to vent...thanks for your contribution of your experience; it helps everyone be better informed about what these legalized drug-pushers are doing to us.

  • Minnetonka Twin profile image

    Linda Rogers 5 years ago from Minnesota

    Lizzy-I am the same way when it comes to seeing those commercials for drugs and most of it is telling you how dangerous they are. At our house we all laugh and say, "oh, I want to get on that drug." Not! I am so glad I saw your hub because I was put on a statin in 09 because of high cholesterol. I was first put on simvastatin but recently switched to pravastatin because I told her I was having bad side effects. This is what they were and still are: My body gets sore after going to bed after about a half hour-When I say sore, It is so bothersome that I have to keep turning from my side to my back. I tell my family I flop like a crappy all night long and I'm losing sleep because of it. I also have memory issues but part of this could be due to menopause as I'm almost 50. I told my doctor about all of this and she switched me from simva to pravastatin because she told me other patients found it better regarding the muscle aches. I see no difference since the switch. I am on supplements and walk daily and wish this would be enough. I did find out that my last blood check, my cholesterol looks great and that was when I was on Simva and since then she upped my dosage and like I said, put me on pravastatin. I really want to get off these darn things. Thanks for letting me vent my friend :-)

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, frogyfish,

    I am so sorry to learn that your husband is also a victim of these poisons, for that is what they truly are.

    You must be very pro-active in your health care, and it is sometimes necessary to get almost nasty with the doctor, and remind him that he is supposed to be your PARTNER in your health care, and not a dictator. It IS a "work-for-hire" situation--you have hired the doctor to assist you with your healthcare. You do NOT work for the doctor, the doctor works for YOU! Sometimes, they need to be reminded of that fact. Never be afraid to ask for a second opinion, or for a transfer to a different physician.

    By all means, you may link this hub; thanks for asking. I wish you all the best.

  • frogyfish profile image

    frogyfish 5 years ago from Central United States of America

    Thank you for this informative hub and your personal experience. My spouse too has achieved significant memory loss from Lipitor but he 'needs' the pill more than he needs health. He also is greatly fatigued and still he and his doctor refuse to listen to my request to take him off of it. He does take CoQ10 at my insistence, but that doesn't make a 'seeable' difference at this point. Again, thanks for this truth...I would like to link this hub to one I have written about statins if you wouldn't mind.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, BlissfulWriter,

    It's true--many of the side-effects are not even listed on those long lists of "possible side effects." Something is very wrong with this picture. The ability to research on our own via the Internet is a very important tool in educating ourselves to be in charge of our own health. You raise good points, and I thank you for your well-thought-out comment.

  • BlissfulWriter profile image

    BlissfulWriter 5 years ago

    I have read many article of negative side effect of statins. Granted statins may be necessary for some. But one has to know of their possible dangers as well. Statins can damage muscle and cause cholesterol to be too low resulting in depression. Just Google "statin muscle", "statin depression". Anyone taking statins should also consider supplementing with CoEnzyme Q10, because they decrease Co-Q10 levels which is a very important nutrient for the mitochrondria.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi there, Millionaire Tips,

    LOL--that graphic appears (0r used to) in the forum post for the WTI--Simone said we could use it, so I do. ;-)

    I'm glad you haven't had the unfortunate experience of being put on these drugs. I did a fair amount of research before mentioning it to my husband's doctor...and even then, it was a battle. You have to be and remain strong, or have a good friend or family member as an ally, in you are not feeling strong. That was the case with my mother-in-law; they had her on a whole cocktail of things that was making her worse, but she was so tired and weakened, that she just gave in to the doctors, and did not have the emotional stamina to do battle. If only we lived closer to her, we'd have boxed that doctor's ears for him! (Or at least threatened him with a malpractice suit...)

    Thanks so much for your excellent comment and the vote!

  • Millionaire Tips profile image

    Shasta Matova 5 years ago from USA

    What a cute weekly topic inspiration graphic. I agree - many times when I hear the disclaimers, I think I would rather have the illness than the side effects. They are crazy! I haven't had any statins and have heard that they can have some pretty serious side effect. Good for you to standing up to your doctor. I don't know if I would have second guessed myself and thought that maybe it could be something else, or just hereditary or something. Voted up.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, bayoulady,

    Thank you very much for the compliment.

    Good for you on standing up for your rights as a patient. I'm sure the doctor doesn't like it--too bad--they work for us--not the other way around, it is, in essence a 'work for hire' situation, and the sooner they remember that, the better.

    It does feel good, doesn't it to give yourself permission to speak up on your own behalf. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your excellent experience.

  • bayoulady profile image

    bayoulady 5 years ago from Northern Louisiana,USA

    Nicely done, and spot on! Before I can get a few sentences out,my doctors whip out the old prescription pad and start writing. For the past few years, I tell them,"Please do not write me a prescription. I will not take it from you until you listen to me" Admittedly,it doesn't "go over " well,but at least they stop writing,and listen,though sometimes with a petulant or hostile expression. I feel empowered to a small degree,though!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, newusedcarsscram,

    As patients, we have the right to a voice in our treatment, and it IS up to us to ask questions, become informed, and do some research of our own when we have concerns

    While it is true that we have not been to medical school, we should be partners in our health care with our doctors, and they are supposed to listen carefully to our concerns, and offer an alternative if we are uncomfortable with the side effects of a given medication, especially if we have personally experienced that side effect. Many of these effects are very dangerous; some are deadly.

    It is unfortunate, but true that much of a doctor’s “knowledge” about any given medication comes solely from the pharmaceutical companies’ sales literature. There are hundreds of thousands of medicines, and doctors cannot be expected to be an encyclopedia on them all, Ergo, it behooves us as patients to look into things on our own, and raise questions.

    . Thank you for commenting.

    Hello, Specialk3749,

    I know exactly what you mean. Unfortunately, the holistic practitioners are few and far between, and our “Western” medicine likes to classify all of the safer, more natural treatments as “alternative” medicine, making it, for the most part, ineligible for coverage under insurance plans.

    I can’t believe a doctor would “threaten” a patient into taking a medication. That is the worst thing I ever heard! I’d be looking for a new doctor, too—after telling the first one where she could stick her medicine.

    You are so right, that our system only wants to throw drugs at the symptoms instead of treating the underlying problem. I’m going through a similar issue with my knee at the moment…they just want to send me for a cortisone shot, instead of fixing the problem. I said “No, that just masks the pain, it doesn’t fix the problem.” The doctor looked at me funny, and said, “Yes, it does; it reduces the inflammation.” REALLY??? Uhh…the inflammation is caused by a specific injury, thank you very much!

    Thanks so much for commenting and sharing your experience.

    Hello, MikeNV,

    Bingo! You’ve hit the nail on the head—go to the head of the class with a gold star on your forehead!

    There are studies showing that drugs make people worse instead of better. Our so-called “treatments” don’t help; they hinder.

    In the chiropractor’s office there is a sign, “If we give healthy people drugs, they get sick, so why do we give drugs to sick people?” It is a reasonable question, given that so many of these drugs do make people sicker!

    I agree with your points, and I thank you for your comment and the vote!

  • MikeNV profile image

    MikeNV 5 years ago from Henderson, NV

    Voting up. Physcians seldom treat disease, they treat the symptoms of disease. There is (sadly) this consensus among most Doctors that the patient won't do what they need to do so just prescribe the drug. Then there are a lot of patients that are really like that... they expect some kind of drug to be a cure for what ails them.

    One must look beyond the side effects and ask themselves why is my body doing this? In the case of cholesterol one should ask why does my body make cholesterol and what does it do? Cholesterol build up in the arteries is a result of some degenerative process/inflammation. If you believe the best treatment option is to block a natural healing process using drugs then you will probably just take the drug and live a shorter less healthy life. But if you believe you should do what it takes to actually address the CAUSE of the condition they you'll dig deeper and make the lifestyle change necessary for the body to heal itself.

  • Specialk3749 profile image

    Karen Metz 5 years ago from Michigan

    The more I study about traditional medication, the more leary I am about going to a doctor! I have been looking for a naturalist doctor in my area who is knowledgeable about traditional meds as well, but they are very few and far between.

    My doctor wanted me to take a statin and I told her I would not. She looked at me like I was crazy and told me I would die of heart disease. Thankfully, I had studied about statins before this and knew that there was an underlying cause. Why would she not want to treat the cause rather than the symptom? To make a long story short, I am now looking for a new doctor because this doctor got to the point of threatening me to take them instead of letting me make the decision.

    I hope people who read your hub really listen to your warning! It is real and these drugs are just a treatment for the symptom rather than the problem.

  • newusedcarssacram profile image

    newusedcarssacram 5 years ago from Sacramento, CA, U.S.A

    As common people we do not have professional knowledge about drugs and medicines so we have to rely upon doctors suggestions. But It is always good if we keep our health good and doesn't depend too much on medicines...anyways your hub is informative...up always!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, Pamela,

    I'm glad there was something useful in here for you. I wish your mom well. Thanks so much for the votes and share.

  • Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

    Pamela Kinnaird W 5 years ago from Maui and Arizona

    Thank you for putting the word Crestor in the first paragraph so that it could sink into my brain. My mom has been on it for years. I will speak to her doctor.

    Excellent hub. Voting up, useful and sharing.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, rebeccamealey,

    I'm glad I was able to assist in your evaluation in treating cholesterol levels. (One nearly foolproof way is by embracing a vegetarian or vegan diet.) My husband's cardiologist even suggested he go vegan!! I was astounded and impressed. I'm a vegetarian, but I don't think I could manage vegan.

    Thanks very much for stopping by and for the votes!

  • rebeccamealey profile image

    Rebecca Mealey 5 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

    Thanks for another opinion on statins. I will continue looking for natural ways to lower cholesterol. Voted very useful, and interesting!

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
    Author

    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi, Peggy W,

    You are right--they ALL have side effects, many of which are frightening at best and absolutely devastating at worst. We are, indeed, ultimately responsible for our own health care, so we can always ask for a second opinion, or decline any treatment whose risks we are unwilling to assume. Doctors are not gods, and we are not their employees or their children, bound to 'obey.'

    Thanks very much for your wise words, as well as the votes and share.

  • Peggy W profile image

    Peggy Woods 5 years ago from Houston, Texas

    Very interesting hub. There is literally no drug out there that does not have a long list of side effects and many of them are life threatening including possible death. That is SOME SIDE EFFECT! We all need to consider doctor recommendations but then make the ultimate decisions ourselves. Up votes and sharing.

  • DzyMsLizzy profile image
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    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, travel man1971, Yes, you are right--we will each react differently, and yes, drugs have side effects, many of them very dangerous. The point is, instead of accepting the "expert's" prescription blindly, we should inquire as to alternatives that are more holistic and less likely to have these undesireable side effects.

    It is the big drug companies that are pushing all of these drugs, and then you need another prescription to counteract the side effects of the first, and so on--drugs are making us sick, and Big Pharma views it as job security.

    Thanks for stopping by and adding your perspective.

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    Ireno Alcala 5 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

    I agree with you, DzyMsLizzy. Each of us will have different reactions on the drugs that will be prescribed to us.

    My dermatologist said that all drugs have side-effects, so a prescription from an expert is needed before taking a pill to relieve whatever discomfort or sickness you are into.

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    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hello, RTalloni,

    I'm pleased I was able to offer some useful information for you. Thanks so much for commenting and sharing your thoughts. Best of health to you!

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    RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

    An interesting look at using statins with lots of food for thought. Thanks for the reminder that I need to get back to seriously addressing cholesterol issues naturally!

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    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    Hi there, fpherj48,

    I'm glad you stuck to your guns, and got off those drugs. The secone doctor thought you were "gambling" with your life??!! Oh, my gosh--did he think you'd otherwise be immortal? Here's the answer I use when a doctor says something stupid like that: "Gee--that's the thing about life--you don't get out of it alive!"

    You are right--we are caught in the middle--but, as the ones who live inside our own bodies, it is our responsibility and our right to insist on care that does not do more harm than good. Remind the doctor of their Hippocratic Oath.... (it seems SOME of them may have become confused, and taken a Hypocritic Oath, instead....)

    Thanks for sharing your experience and for the votes!

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    Paula 5 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

    Lizzy....Yes, I've been aware of the facts you state here about "statins," and it's very upsetting to me. To think that we take a medication, for some time, believing it is necessary to our health issues, only to learn it is harmful, is so disillusioning. I was on statins.....decided to stop due to the information that was quite authentic and specific. I told my Dr, and she seemed only somewhat against this. I was comfortable with my decision.

    However, another Dr. seemed to be appalled that I had stopped them and went on about my "gambling with my life."..........We patients are in a very precarious position. The best thing is to research thoroughly and read as much as possible.

    What other choices do we have? I feel stuck in the middle of a dilemma............Up++

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    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    @ drbj--Oh, man, you said a mouthful. Big Pharma indeed has too much control, not only over healthcare, but they also live in the back pockets of the politicians, so that laws are passed in favor of their own bank accounts and to heck with the real health of the public at large!

    And yes, 'statins' are far more dangerous than their little leaflets would have you believe. Thanks for commenting!

    @ Nell Rose--Hi there, and thanks for the support. Yes, doctors are stubborn..but guess what? So am I. And I have reached an age where I refuse to be intimidated anymore by so-called "authority" figures. We already requested a new doctor for his primary care physician, and his cardiologist "dropped" him because we insisted on some point--so we were "offered" a "second opinion," which really meant he was washing his hands of us. I guess we got too close to the truth...anyway...we ended up with the chief of cardiology, and she was much more reasonable!

    Thanks much for your comment, vote and share!

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    Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

    Hi, I am so sorry you had to go through this, some doctors are so stubborn and as you mentioned they just read the sheet and thats it, I know, same with my thyroid meds, sometimes its easier to stay healthy without the so called healthy drugs, voted and shared, nell

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    drbj and sherry 5 years ago from south Florida

    This is very important information for anyone who is on statins to read, Lizzy. It is unfortunate but true that often to learn exactly what contraindications are for the medications our doctors prescribe, we have to do our own research. Big pharma has far too much control over healthcare professionals.

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    Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

    @ rjsadowski—You are right—we are responsible for our own health and well-being. Doctors should be on our side in this process. More than once, we’ve had to remind a doctor, “Hey, YOU work for ME—not the other way around.” Doctors should ideally be our partners in maintaining our health, and not the drug company puppets they seem to have become, as you point out in your closing observation. Your contribution to the topic is appreciated; thank you.

    @ mperrottet—Your husband is one of the lucky ones. My mother-in-law also had problems with these medications, and there is some evidence that certain drug reactions can be hereditary. And yes, doctors need far more schooling than they get in the areas of holistic treatments instead of just pushing pills. Thank you so much for your comment and the votes!

    @ Seeker7—Thank you very much for the compliment. And, you are so right, that the full lists of side effects (or potential ones) are like some deep, dark secret they don’t want you to know. It is maddening at best and dangerous at any rate.

    I’m so sorry to hear of your traumatic experience from ‘the pill.’ I guess I was one of the lucky ones in that respect, as I was on it for about 30 years with no ill effects at all, despite all the warnings about scary stuff like blood clots and heart attacks.

    In the end, yes, it IS up to each of us to remain informed about our own health, and to not let doctors give us the brush-off, because THEY aren’t the ones inhabiting our bodies!

    I’m so pleased you found the article useful, and I thank you very much for the votes and share!

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    Helen Murphy Howell 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland

    Lizzy as awlays a fantastic hub and you've hit the nail on the head with the drugs side effects. There are side effects that will be on the packet - but not always and I'm also proof of that, although not due to cholesterol medication. Many years ago I developed a massive gall stone and basically had to have my gall bladder removed - I was about 29 years old at the time. Anyhow, it was my Consultant Surgeon who told me that the likely cause of my gall stone was the contraceptive pill, he then said, and I quote: "but they won't tell you that on the packet." It was a few years later before I met anyone else who had this experience, but she was a fellow healthcare worker and her consultant had told her the same thing. She was 32 when she had her gall bladder removed due to 'the pill'.

    The thing is Lizzy is that, okay you might not be a doctor, but if they are being brainwashed/cohersed by the drugs companies then it's up to us, the public, who have to swallow these dam things to do something about it.

    Excellent hub + voted up + shared!

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    Margaret Perrottet 5 years ago from Pennsauken, NJ

    My husband's been on statins for years and seems to be OK. I was aware of the possibility of liver damage, but didn't know about the memory loss. I'm going to pass this information on to my husband. I think you're right - doctors don't pay enough attention to the side effects, and put us on medicine far too easily rather than encouraging us to use natural methods to cure ourselves. Voted up, useful and interesting.

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    rjsadowski 5 years ago

    Interesting Hub. There are so many potential side-effects listed that after awhile you ignore them all. Thanks for reminding us. Ultimately, we are responsible for which medications we take. Often, doctors will perscribe whichever medicine that the drug companies are pushing that month.