Silver Book Fact

“Although high cholesterol was recognized as a key risk factor for cardiovascular disease in the 1970s, there were no good ways to reduce it. The best drug available was a grainy powder called cholestyramine. Patients mixed it with juice, but it tasted like sand–one patient said it was like drinking Miami Beach. Taking it was so unpleasant that it was prescribed for only the most severe cases.”

“Millions of people now control their cholesterol, and reduce their risk of heart disease, by swallowing a small pill just once a day. A new class of medicines, statins, was introduced in 1987 and offers a safe and effective way to lower cholesterol. One NIH official Claude Lenfant, even said that if all patients took statins according to guidelines, heart disease would no longer be the No. 1 killer.”

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