Visiting Professor at the Department of Pharmacology, University of Vienna, Austria
Professional athletes suffering from familial hypercholesterolaemia rarely tolerate statin treatment because of muscular problems
Article first published online: 3 FEB 2004
British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology
Volume 57, Issue 4, pages 525–528, April 2004
How to Cite
Sinzinger, H. and O'Grady, J. (2004), Professional athletes suffering from familial hypercholesterolaemia rarely tolerate statin treatment because of muscular problems. British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 57: 525–528. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2125.2003.02044.x
- Issue published online: 3 FEB 2004
- Article first published online: 3 FEB 2004
- Received17 July 2003 Accepted30 October 2003
- creatine phosphokinase;
- familial hypercholesterolaemia;
- muscle pains;
- oxidation injury;
- professional athletes
Muscular problems are the major group of side-effects during statin treatment. They are known to occur much more frequently during and after exercise.
Methods and results
For the last 8 years we have monitored 22 professional athletes in whom, because of familial hypercholesterolaemia, treatment with different statins was attempted. Only six out of the 22 finally tolerated at least one member of this family of drugs. In three of these six the first statin prescribed allowed training performance without any limitation. Changing the drug demonstrated that only two tolerated all the four or five statins examined (atorvastatin, fluvastatin, lovastatin, pravastatin, simvastatin). Cerivastatin was not among the statins prescribed.
These findings indicate that in top sports performers only about 20% tolerate statin treatment without side-effects. Clinical decision making as to lipid lowering therapy thus becomes a critical issue in this small subgroup of patients.