A new study has found that the cholesterol-lowering drug atorvastatin canprevent heart disease and help individualswith type 2 diabetes live longer evenif they have normal cholesterol levels.The study involved >2800 patients withdiabetes who were split into 2 groups.One group was given atorvastatin andthe other given placebo pills.
During a 4-year period, the patientswho took the statin were 27% less likelyto die and 37% less likely to have a heartattack or stroke. The researchers concludedthat the drug should be given topatients with type 2 diabetes even if theyhave normal cholesterol levels. Yet, oneexpert argued that it was too early to recommendthat all type 2 diabetics takecholesterol-lowering drugs. (The findingswere published in the Lancet,August 21, 2004.)