When statins were first introduced about a decade ago, they were widely hailed as miracle drugs that could stop heart disease. Since then, there has been considerable debate about who benefits most from these cholesterol-lowering drugs. A new study provides some answers to at least one of these questions about statins: the drugs appear to be just as effective in females as in males.
Researchers analyzed data from 18 clinical trials to see whether people who took statins had a lower risk of heart attack or stroke compared to people who were taking a placebo or did not take statins. They found that the statin takers did indeed have a lower risk and the results were the same for both men and women, according to the study, which was publishes in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
This doesn't mean that everyone should start taking statins as soon as they reach midlife, when the risk of heart attack or stroke starts to increase. Only you and your doctor can decide if taking medication is the best way to reduce your level of LDL cholesterol (which can clog arteries).