Statins linked to improved heart structure and function

A large study using data from the UK Biobank found that people taking statins were less likely to have thickening of the heart muscle and enlarged heart chambers.

Coloured x-ray showing an enlarged heart

Some experimental studies have indicated that statins confer several beneficial cardiovascular effects, independently of their influence on cholesterol levels. However, this has not been confirmed in a large study.

In a study presented at the EuroCMR conference[1]
(25 May 2017), a team used data from the UK Biobank on 4,622 people who underwent cardiovascular magnetic resonance imaging, 17% of whom were receiving statins.

They found that, after accounting for potential confounders, people taking statins were significantly less likely to show thickening of the heart muscle and enlarged heart chambers, which are known predictors of future heart attack, heart failure or stroke, compared with those not taking statins.

These findings demonstrate a significant effect of statins on positive myocardial remodelling in a large real-life sample.


[1] Aung N, Sanghvi MM, Zemrak F et al. The effect of statin therapy on ventricular structure and function as assessed by cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR): insights from the UK Biobank. Presented at: 15th Annual Meeting on CMR of the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging; 25-27 May 2017; Prague, Czech Republic. Abstract available here: 

Last updated
Clinical Pharmacist, CP, August 2017, Vol 9, No 8;9(8):DOI:10.1211/PJ.2017.20203073

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