Along comes Statins and Statin Induced Myopathy
Myopathy is a Muscle disease usually involving a lot of inflammation
Now it seems that a lot of my friends have this all-over pain that their doctor calls Fibromyalgia. Since I am 75 years old, many of my friends are also in this age group. It is also apparent that a lot of them have Coronary Heart Disease (CAD). With this heart and artery disease comes the almost automatic prescription of a Statin drug that lowers cholesterol. Zocor (Simvastatin), is one of the more prescribed statins. The Risk-to-benefit ratio is much more favorable in the younger population (35 years to 60) while it is much more risky for the elderly population (65 to 75) and not helpful at all in the 85 and up population. (See:
Statin Adverse Effects: Implications for the
The whole point of this discussion is to get you to understand the impact that statins (both good and bad) have had on the general population. (See:
FDA warning on Statin induced Myopathy)
Fibromyalgia, Consider first : Mayo Clinic Symptoms (37 listed) of Statin induced Myopathy
In the 1990’s, Fibromyalgia was defined as, long-lasting or chronic pain, stiffness, and tenderness in muscles, joints, and tendons and statin induced myopthy was not even discussed or considered. Unlike similar muscle and joint pain disorders, popularly called rheumatic disorders, fibromyalgia pain occurs without swelling. Fibromyalgia is characterized by the presence of sensitive areas, called tender points, commonly found in the elbows, knees, hips, and back of the head. Touching these tender points may trigger severe discomfort and widespread pain and muscle spasm. Other symptoms include difficulty sleeping, fatigue, poor concentration, and headaches. People with fibromyalgia are also more likely to have irritable bowel syndrome, a chronic disorder that causes abdominal cramping and discomfort. According to the American College of Rheumatology, fibromyalgia occurs in 5 percent of the American population. Found in all age groups and in both sexes, the condition primarily affects women ages 20 to 40.
Although the cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, many different factors, such as stress or inadequate sleep, may trigger or worsen the symptoms. Researchers are investigating possible connections between fibromyalgia and abnormal levels of hormones and neurotransmitters (chemicals that regulate the body’s physical processes). Certain infectious agents, such as the bacteria that cause Lyme disease and the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which causes AIDS, may also be linked to fibromyalgia.
Physicians diagnose fibromyalgia by determining if a patient has soreness in at least 11 of 18 possible tender points and widespread body pain without swelling. If both of these symptoms are present, a positive diagnosis is confirmed after the physician administers a series of blood tests to eliminate the possibility of other disorders that create similar symptoms, such as arthritis, lupus erythematosus, and thyroid disorders.
There is no cure for fibromyalgia, but a number of treatments can ease its symptoms. Careful stretching and low-impact exercise, stress reduction, and improved sleep patterns may offer relief. Physicians may inject pain-relieving medications, such as analgesics or cortisone, directly into a patient’s tender points to reduce pain and muscle spasm. Small doses of certain antidepressants, taken at bedtime, may help relax muscles and improve sleep.