We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Thanks for the link, Bill. Very interesting. I'll await comments from Dr. Bliss re: Ms. Szwarc's rather detailed critique of the study (which is, admittedly, beyond my ability/patience to digest completely).
I'm also interested in comments re: CRP and why this isn't a standard item reported in blood monitoring wrt heart disease.
My MIL had a violent and extremely painful reaction to long-term statin use. It took her 4 months to recover from joint pain so severe she felt like her body was being pulled apart.
My mom's S.O. had similar issues with statins - though he stopped taking them after a shorter period of time than my MIL.
I've heard cardiologists from Columbia Medical Center on a talk show on Sirius Satellite Radio - saying that the last thing they will prescribe someone is a statin, viewing it as a last resort rather than a first line of defense.
Use of Red Yeast Rice was recommended to my husband - a Type II diabetic. He's been on it consistently for the past 90 days - which is what we understand is the timeframe it takes it to fully work. He'll have bloodwork done next month as part of his diabetes plan and we'll know for sure.
Kris, in New England
Understand that the CRP issue developed from an epidemiology study - data dredge for short - not clinical studies. It has been discredited, re: my previous link. Statins have been associated with memory loss, muscle and joint pain (a more serious condition than is implied by the "caution in passing" disclaimers) an increased risk of strokes, and decrease in cognitive function.
The link to cholesterol reduction and heart disease is also tenuous at best.
Otherwise, statins are the most profitable drug on the market currently. The recommendations hyped by the MSM from the report carry with them a recommendation for the CRP test - about $3000 a pop, if I recall.
Take the time to read Szwarc's article, and follow the links. Understand that there are many linkages between the "researchers" and the industry and very little definitive clinical evidence - much is based on data dredges and models - not a good thing.
Haven't seen any clinical evidence regarding red yeast rice.
Keep in mind that genetics are the primary indicating factor in both heart (vascular) and cancer issues. Not much seems to side track that point.
I would question the first statement - recall that, historically, rickets (vitamin C), blindness (vitamin A), as two examples, were defined through clinical medicine. The problem, in part, derives from the perception of epidemiologist as "hero." Recall the conflicting "evidence" regarding red wine, salt, red dye, antioxidents, transfats... The rule of thumb - Correlation is not causation - is completely disregarded in the rush to be the next media star or generate the buzz for another "study" grant. The net result is confusion in the public arena, fear of the unknown, wasted resources and, in too many cases, increased mortality. Just recall the number of therapies introduced over the last decade and subsequently recalled as a result of euphamistically labeled "poor outcomes" - Celebrix, for example.
Add the Feds as the primary grant funding source, driven by the search for a magic bullet. I have no quarrel with industry funded research, provided the results are transparent, financial linkages and potential bias clearly defined, results independently reviewed, data publically available and side effects thoroughly evaluated. In too many cases, including the current topic, that is clearly not the case.
I agree heartily with your last comment. My brother is an advocate of "natural" medicines and nearly did himself in pursuing a natural cure. I never really understood the distinction between "natural" and "synthetic" chemicals - more "organic" hand waving to cover ignorance.