The impact of the use of statins on the prevalence of dementia and the progression of cognitive impairment.


Journal Article

BACKGROUND: Previous evidence suggests that treatment with 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme-A reductase inhibitors (statins) has a positive impact on dementia. We decided to investigate the association between the use of statins and the prevalence of dementia and statins' impact on the progression of cognitive impairment. METHODS: This is a case-control and a retrospective cohort study of a community-based ambulatory primary care geriatric practice. We included a convenience sample of all patients (N = 655, mean age 78.7 +/- 0.3 years, 85% Caucasian, 74% women) with hypercholesterolemia or dementia, or using statins. We compared those using statins with those who do not with respect to the clinical diagnosis of dementia and its subtypes and the progression of cognitive impairment. RESULTS: At the initial visit, 35% had dementia, and 17% were using statins. After covariate adjustments, patients on statins were less likely to have dementia (odds ratio [OR] for dementia based on composite definition = 0.23; 95% confidence interval [CI] [0.1-0.56], p =.001, OR Alzheimer's disease = 0.37; 95% CI [0.19-0.74], p =.005, OR vascular dementia = 0.25; 95% CI [0.08-0.85], p =.027). At follow-up, patients on statins showed an improvement on their Mini-Mental Status Examination score by 0.7 +/- 0.4 compared to a decline by 0.5 +/- 0.3 in controls, p =.025 (OR for no change or improvement on statins = 2.81; 95% CI [1.02-8.43], p =.045) and scored higher on the Clock Drawing Test (difference of 1.5 +/- 0.1, p =.036). CONCLUSIONS: The use of statins is associated with a lower prevalence of dementia and has a positive impact on the progression of cognitive impairment.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Hajjar, I; Schumpert, J; Hirth, V; Wieland, D; Eleazer, GP

Published Date

  • July 2002

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 57 / 7

Start / End Page

  • M414 - M418

PubMed ID

  • 12084801

Pubmed Central ID

  • 12084801

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1758-535X

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1079-5006

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1093/gerona/57.7.m414


  • eng