Blog | Wednesday, June 5, 2013

QD: News Every Day--Statins may be associated with arthropathies, injuries, pain in physically active people

Statins were associated with increased musculoskeletal conditions, arthropathies, injuries, and pain than among matched nonusers, especially in physically active individuals, a study found.

Researchers conducted a retrospective cohort study using propensity score matching in a military health system to determine whether statin use is associated with musculoskeletal conditions from October 2003 to March 2010.

Musculoskeletal conditions was determined using ICD-9 codes for Msk1, all musculoskeletal diseases; Msk1a, arthropathies and related diseases; Msk1b, injury-related diseases (dislocation, sprain, strain); and Msk2, drug-associated musculoskeletal pain.

Results appeared online June 3 at JAMA Internal Medicine.

Nearly 7,000 statin users were matched to the same number of nonusers. Statin users had a higher odds ratio (OR) for Msk1 (OR, 1.19; 95% CI, 1.08-1.30), Msk1b (1.13; 1.05-1.21), and Msk2 (1.09; 1.02-1.18). The OR for Msk1a was 1.07 (0.99-1.16; P=.07).

First author Ishak Mansi, MD, FACP, of the VA North Texas Health Care System in Dallas and co-authors noted that, "Musculoskeletal conditions, arthropathies, injuries and pain are more common among statin users than among similar nonusers. The full spectrum of statins' musculoskeletal adverse events may not be fully explored, and further studies are warranted, especially in physically active individuals."

Dr. Mansi and co-authors expanded their thinking in an accompanying press release: "In our primary analysis, we did not find a statistically significant association between statin use and arthropathy; however, this association was statistically significant in all other analyses. These findings are concerning because starting statin therapy at a young age for primary prevention of cardiovascular diseases has been widely advocated."