Is it true that prolonged use of Lipitor-type drugs can cause diabetes?
It’s true. All medications have side effects, and numerous studies have shown that cholesterol-lowering statin drugs are linked to a small increase in the risk of Type 2 diabetes, even as they reduce the risk of heart attacks.
The higher the dose of a statin, the greater the diabetes risk, said Dr. Eric Topol, director of the Scripps Translational Science Institute and chief academic officer at Scripps Health. But many heart doctors, including Dr. Mary Norine Walsh, president-elect of the American College of Cardiology, say concern about diabetes should not deter patients from taking statins “if you fall into the higher risk category” for heart disease.