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Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol
When an individual receives unhealthy cholesterol test results, there are many things they can do to improve their heart health. These include starting an aspirin regimen and talking to their doctor about statin and blood pressure medications. However, a new study finds that many individuals around the world do not have access to these common therapies.
Researchers from McMaster University surveyed 154,000 adults from 17 countries around the world. The team reported in the journal The Lancet that low-income individuals were significantly less likely to take aspirin or statin medications to control their cholesterol levels, even though these drugs are relatively inexpensive.
Lead researcher Salim Yusuf called the findings "disturbing, and indicate a need for systematic efforts to understand why even inexpensive medications are substantially underutilized worldwide. This is a global tragedy and represents a huge wasted opportunity to help millions of people with heart disease at very low cost."
Heart disease is the leading cause of mortality in the world, yet the medications described in the study could potentially prevent many deaths. Yusuf added that addressing the causes of limited access to these drugs could help more people take advantage of their benefits.
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