Claim

Statin drug use nearly doubles your risk of diabetes, study claims.

Verdict

True

There is a single clinical trial demonstrating that diabetes risk is adversely affected by statin use.

Origin

Time Health published an article entitled ‘statins may seriously increase diabetes risk’ based on their interpretation of a Finnish research study. The study was published in Diabetologica in 2015 and looked at the relationship between statin therapy and diabetes risk (1).

The study followed 8,749 non-diabetic participants, aged between 45 and 73 years of age, over a six-year period. The results of the study showed that participants receiving statin therapy had a 46% increased risk of type 2 diabetes. Additionally, study participants on statins who developed diabetes had decreased insulin sensitivity and decreased insulin secretion.

The metabolic risk factor profile of individuals who developed diabetes on statin therapy was similar to those who developed diabetes off statin therapy, which suggests that statin therapy is an independent risk factor for diabetes.

Clinical guidelines still recommend statin therapy as the overall benefit of statins in terms of reducing the risk of heart attacks and strokes is considered to outweigh the risk of developing diabetes.

In summary, a single clinical trial found a relationship between statin use and development of diabetes. However, the benefits of statin therapy are still considered to outweigh the risk of diabetes in patients with cardiovascular risk factors.

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