Statins are good for neuropathy

Do you take a statin to lower your cholesterol?
6
yes - 60.0%
4
no - 40.0%

 
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Jeannie143
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Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 6056
   Posted 9/12/2007 7:19 AM (GMT -7)   
Just read an article in my local paper (Lansing State Journal) that stated that statins have been found to prevent neuropathy in diabetics as well as stop present damage in its tracks. It cannot reverse current nerve damage but hey, we can't have everything! Much of the news about these statins gets better and better. They can help prevent sudden death from heart attack and stroke, they lower cholesterol, and now they help prevent neuropathy.

Yes, they do have a down side, but as long as you are getting your liver function blood tests they seem to be a real boon to us. Periferal vascular disease is the number one cause of amputations and if we can prevent this with a med I'm all for it.

My question is, "Do you take a statin med like Lipitor to lower your cholesterol?"
~ Jeannie, Forum Moderator/Diabetes & Fibromyalgia
~Please remember that 50% of all doctors graduated in the bottom half of their class! Yours may be one of them...
==================
"People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun's out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light within."
- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross


tutorgirl
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 235
   Posted 9/12/2007 8:24 AM (GMT -7)   
I take a generic form of Zocor for cholesterol. I had blood work done Monday so it will be interesting to see what my cholesterol is since also eating low carb since mid-August. I see my doc Monday so will ask her if she had read that about the statins. May want to stay on even a low dose when my cholesterol gets better than good!

Karen

fergusc
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 230
   Posted 9/12/2007 9:48 AM (GMT -7)   
Oh, I do love a nice controversy, so here I go again-
Statins are yet another false dawn / red herring / medical mirage. I'm fairly confident that, in time, we'll all be consigning them to the same bin as all the low-fat starchy carbohydrate diets that we're still conned into believing are 'heart healthy'.
Statins may benefit some, but few, of those taking them. I believe 1 man in every 50 will show a slight benefit over a period of 5 years, but this has nothing to do with lowering cholesterol; there's something else going on which is unclear at the moment.
My doctor recently tried to put me on statins because I'm now a type 1 diabetic over the age of 40, and, apparently, everyone over that age should be taking them. So I looked at the evidence for them. What I discovered is this:
The cholesterol hypothesis is very shaky science indeed. There's a great deal of evidence to suggest that high fat diets don't cause high cholesterol. High cholesterol levels don't cause heart disease either. And Harvard Medical School has published research that women don't benefit from statins at all! What is relatively undisputed is that statins come with a variety of unpleasant side effects. And the NHS here spent over £1bn on them last year alone!
So it seemed to me that the only ones to benefit from my prescription for statins were the drugs companies. Surprise, surprise eh?
Anyway, my prescription ended up in the bin. There's nothing it could do for me that a proper diet and regular exercise couldn't do a whole lot better. Now, where have we heard that before?

All the best,

fergusc

gelchick
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 477
   Posted 9/12/2007 2:19 PM (GMT -7)   
My doctor also wanted me to go on statins and blood pressure medicine despite the fact that my lipid profile is and always has been excellent and my blood pressure runs really low. Apparently it's a dictum from a large study that was conducted ( maybe the DCCT?). All diabetics need metformin, statins, and ACE inhibitors (to preserve kidney function). I resisted and continue to do so at every appointment.
 
Now that my A1c has been in a non-diabetic range for 7 months, I asked her if she thought I would be developing complications like a diabetic, or not developing complications as others with my A1c do not. She could not say. Logic dictates that if the complications are the result of high blood sugar, then I should devlop complications at the same rate as non-diabetics (excluding any things that may have been brewing while I was high). If they are the result of hyperinsulemia (high amounts of circulating insulin), or insulin surges- then by keeping my bg steady at all times (by low carb eating, exercising down highs) and limiting spikes- I should also develop complications as a non-diabetic. If the complications are the result of a combination of genetic abnormalities that also produces type 2 diabetes, then the story changes- but NOBODY knows for sure. So I refused the drugs until there is some evidence of the latter, or until I start to have increased blood pressure, changes in my lipid profile, etc.
sandy
I just want to live happily ever after-every now and then. Jimmy Buffett


bamabrave
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 13
   Posted 9/12/2007 4:01 PM (GMT -7)   

I take Crestor (10mg).  It did lower my cholesterol and has kept it down.  I feel it was this medicine because nothing in my diet was changed when I began taking it.  I was already on Crestor when I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes last June.  My liver profiles done every 6 months to watch for that side effect.  I never have had any ill effects from the statin at all.  I do not know if I would say that everyone should be taking statins but I have benefited from Crestor.

Pattie


Jeannie143
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 6056
   Posted 9/13/2007 4:04 AM (GMT -7)   
So would you take statins for neuropathy? If you were diagnosed with this problem would you use them since they are the only med shown to stop it's progress? Even with low sugars, diabetics have blood vessel changes that normals don't have. We appear to have weakened vessel walls as well as other vessel changes that contribute to higher blood pressure, stroke and heart attacks. And it's more than high sugars that contribute to kidney damage... so before you throw the baby out with the bathwater, you may want to reconsider your meds. I know we all react differently to dietary changes and exercise, but the fact remains that we continue to have diabetes even with controlled sugars. And there is more to diabetes than high sugars... we have lots of organ changes that normals don't have. Me, I'm trying to be pro-active rather than reactive. Dialog helps us all understand this better so I'm open to everyone's input.
~ Jeannie, Forum Moderator/Diabetes & Fibromyalgia
~Please remember that 50% of all doctors graduated in the bottom half of their class! Yours may be one of them...
==================
"People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun's out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light within."
- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross


gelchick
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 477
   Posted 9/13/2007 7:37 AM (GMT -7)   
Jeannie,
 
You said:
 
Even with low sugars, diabetics have blood vessel changes that normals don't have. We appear to have weakened vessel walls as well as other vessel changes that contribute to higher blood pressure, stroke and heart attacks.
 
If your statement is true, that implies a genetic connection, because if you are running the same sugar levels as a non-diabetic, there is no metabolic reason for you to have those changes. I have seen no strong studies that have demonstrated this, and to my knowledge, the human genome project hasn't turned up gene defects or gene combinations that would make a diabetic individual predisposed to those changes.
 
Personally, I do not believe that type 2 diabetes is even a single disease any more than cancer is a single disease. Type 2 diabetics have a relatively common set of symptoms and complictions, just like cancer victims develop tumors - these are the effects not the causes. We now know that cancer has many causes - genetic, viral, environmental. I think it's just a matter of time until we see similar progress with determining what type 2 diabetes REALLY is. There's just too much variation from one individual to another, for it to be a single disease.
 
That said, if I started to develop neuropathy, and if statins were clearly shown to stop or reverse its progress, then I would definitely consider taking them. In general, I don't believe in taking aspirin in case I might get a headache; or pepto in case I might get a stomach ache- and I don't think one report is proof enough to convince me of their efficacy in the treatment or prevention of neuropathy.
 
sandy
I just want to live happily ever after-every now and then. Jimmy Buffett


fergusc
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 230
   Posted 9/13/2007 4:07 PM (GMT -7)   

I agree with you Sandy. I'm scratching my head and struggling to think of a diabetes 'complication' that can't be pinned squarely on abnormal blood sugars. I've looked at the small print and have yet to find something in the diabetic charter which otherwise obliges us to suffer from neuropathy, nephropathy, artherosclerosis, retinopathy etc., etc.

I do read of sufferers from some of these conditions who find the symptoms reversed, even eradicated, once blood glucose levels are normalised however. This is something which is entirely within our own control if we control our diet and exercise regimes properly. I have a lifetime of daily insulin injections to look forward to and quite frankly don't want to be taking anything else unless I have no other alternative thanks.

All the best,

fergusc


kim123
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1201
   Posted 9/13/2007 4:39 PM (GMT -7)   

Statin drugs were actually antifungal drugs first. They work (reducing your cholesterol) b/c they are killing a fungus. Fungus has been implicated in many of our diseases, high chol. one of them. Elevated chol. is a response to an invasion by a toxin in your blood stream. Fungal toxins in the blood stream causes elevated blood cholesterol: cholesterol binds fungal toxins. making them less harmful. Get rid of the fungus and your body doesn't need the excess cholesterol. Natural antifungals and a change in diet to get rid of the fungus (eliminate grains (including corn), processed/refined sugar, yeast) in your body may be worth a try if you are leery to go on prescription drugs.

I think some of you have also found success with elimnating these foods to improve your blood sugar levels. That's because you starving of the fungus in your body, which may be causing your diabetes symptoms. Many of the foods we eat are contaminated with mycotoxins...fungal poisons (corn, peanuts, mushrooms, grains), as well as the antibiotics we take. Fungus is systemic. It can invade any part of our body.

If you are on statin drugs, you may also want to ask your doctor about taking co-Q 10 supplements, as statins cause a defiency of this in your body; can lead to muscle damage...your heart being one of them, as well as other unpleasant symptoms such as chronic aches and pains, leg/calf pain, numbness/weakness, tingling in extremities, memory loss/fogginess, congestive heart failure. 


Jeannie143
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 6056
   Posted 9/14/2007 7:41 AM (GMT -7)   
There is a large body of information concerning vascular changes and diabetes and they aren't all related to blood glucose level issues. We have a whole set of different metabolic changes that normals do not possess. I have one good article I want to cite, problem is, it's intensely technical so be prepared for the big words. The core information of the article follows:

The reason for the prevalence of this form of arterial disease in diabetic persons is thought to result from a number of metabolic abnormalities, including high low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and very-low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) levels, elevated plasma von Willebrand factor, inhibition of prostacyclin synthesis, elevated plasma fibrinogen levels, and increased platelet adhesiveness.

Overall, people with diabetes have a higher incidence of atherosclerosis, thickening of capillary basement membranes, arteriolar hyalinosis, and endothelial proliferation. Calcification and thickening of the arterial media (Mönckeberg sclerosis) also are noted with higher frequency in the diabetic population, although whether these factors have any impact on the circulatory status is unclear.

The pathophysiology of diabetic peripheral neuropathy is multifactorial and is thought to result from vascular disease occluding the vasa nervorum; deficiency of myoinositol-altering myelin synthesis and diminishing sodium-potassium adenine triphosphatase (ATPase) activity; chronic hyperosmolarity, causing edema of nerve trunks; and effects of increased sorbitol and fructose.


Most of these mechanical cellular abnormalities are not directly related to glucose levels but appear to be part of the package that causes our impaired glucose tolerance. I believe that the elevated glucose levels and inefficient energy metabolism of diabetics are the most obvious symptoms of a larger metabolic disorder. This would explain why treating the symptoms with medications and an altered food plan will lower blood glucose levels but will not remove the underlying deficiency in our metabolic mechanism. If we consume low glycemic foods we maintain lower plasma glucose levels but if we eat like normals our numbers go back up.

Vascular changes appear to continue even in the presence of normal sugars because there is lots more going on with diabetes than elevated sugars. I have also found information about a difference between male and female response to metabolic changes in diabetic animal studies.

Gender, Coupled With Diabetes, Affects Vascular Disease Development

This may mean that along with genetics some of us have gender stacked against us as well. Sometimes life isn't fair!
~ Jeannie, Forum Moderator/Diabetes & Fibromyalgia
~Please remember that 50% of all doctors graduated in the bottom half of their class! Yours may be one of them...
==================
"People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun's out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light within."
- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross


Marburg
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 486
   Posted 10/1/2007 2:14 PM (GMT -7)   
Well, I guess I have to come down on the negative side of the statins. I took them for several years to battle high cholesterol. What I have learned is that my diabetes may be part of a syndrome called PCOS or Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Eventually I had to have the cystic ovary removed. Once it was gone my cholesterol and lipids came down dramatically and have remained down despite the foods I ate. While I was on the statins (baycol to begin with and then zocor) I developed a fatty liver and elevated liver enzymes along with muscle aches and----nerve pain in my feet, and fatigue--I was always tired. Keep in mind that during this time I was newly diagnosed as diabetic type 2 and was struggling with my sugar levels. As an experiment I went off the statins (with doctors blessing since my cholesterol and lipids were well within normal range for over 2 years at this point). Guess what? Muscle and nerve pains are gone, liver enzymes are normal and doctor says there is now no sign of fatty liver. Meanwhile cholesterol and lipids have remained normal. The only difference? I do not eat as much fried foods. Sugars are also coming down (except when stressed or sick) and energy is back up. If you're a woman with type 2 diabetes, irregular menstrual periods, and high cholesterol you may want to be evaluated for PCOS.

As for, I will stay away from the statins for now.
Marburg
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