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Statins may reduce risk of pancreatitis

Category: Gastrointestinal Diseases

Statins may help reduce the risk of pancreatitis.While individuals may be able to identify the presence of pancreatitis with the help of a lab test, it may be best to prevent the development of the condition in the first place. New research from the the University of Glasgow in the U.K. suggests that statins may be an effective approach among patients with normal to mildly high triglyceride levels.

Medical experts have not always been clear on the best way to prevent pancreatitis. Previous studies suggesting that statins could be harmful may not have accounted for confounding factors, while treatments with fibrates may increase the risk of gallstones, which potentially lead to pancreatitis.

In order to investigate further, a team of scientists reviewed the data from 21 previously conducted trials on statins, which included about 113,800 study participants. Results from these studies indicated that these medications reduced the risk of pancreatitis by about 21 percent.

Another review of seven randomized clinical trials on fibrates, which included more than 40,000 subjects, revealed that this medication may not have had a significant impact on patients.

"In those with slightly elevated triglyceride levels, statins appear better supported by the available data than fibrates for preventing pancreatitis. Lifestyle modifications also remain important to improve lipid profiles in such individuals," the researchers wrote.

This study may be relevant to patients who are at risk of screening positive for pancreatitis through a lab test.ADNFCR-2248-ID-800846678-ADNFCR

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