- Statin therapy is not tied to global cognitive or memory declines in older people over the course of 6 years.
- An exception is a more rapid decline in logical memory among men taking them.
Why this matters
- These authors say their findings should assuage fears that statins are associated with memory impairment and cognitive decline.
- Statin users and never-users did not differ in rates of memory and global cognition declines or specific memory tests at 6 years.
- Brain volumes did not differ between statin users and never-users.
- Outcomes did not differ for specific statin use vs never-users.
- Statin use was not linked to dementia risk factors.
- Normotensive statin users had slower global cognition decline vs never-users (P=.018).
- In a small subgroup (n=99) initiating statins during the study, memory decline slowed relative to nonusers (P=.038).
- Exploratory analyses suggested potential protection against specific memory declines in patients with heart disease and carrying an Alzheimer variant.
- Men using statins had more rapid declines in logical memory vs male never-users (P=.020).
- Prospective observational study, 1037 community-dwelling Australians ages 70-90 years.
- 395 never-users vs 642 ever-users.
- Funding: Australian National Health and Medical Research Council.
- No causation established, confounding possible.