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Online cholesterol drug retailers offer little information on side effects

Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol

After receiving unhealthy cholesterol test results, many individuals are given a prescription for statins. It is often possible to find these medication online at a lower cost than at traditional pharmacies. However, a new study suggests that doing business with these sites may be risky.

A team of researchers from the University of Portsmouth assessed the quality of information contained in 184 sites selling statin medications. The results showed that many of these sites failed to offer customers important safety information related to their medications.

The majority of sites did not offer information about contraindications associated with statins, nor did they offer warnings about the dangers of myopathy, liver disease, hypertension and pancreatitis, which can occur when taking statins. Only 7 percent presented complete information consistent with current guidelines, with just 65 percent had any information on side effects.

"There is an inherent danger in patients seeking to self-medicate in this way without consulting a healthcare professional and being appraised of ways to use the medicine safely," said David Brown, who led the investigation. ADNFCR-2248-ID-800699851-ADNFCR

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