Statins Don’t Cause Memory Loss? Are These Researchers Drunk?

Like most people, I’ve long assumed whiskey can have a negative impact on memory. The first time I drank whiskey (as a teenager, I’m sorry to say), my only memory after the fourth or fifth shot was of a glowing star dancing in front of my face. I later realized, while helping my drinking buddy clean the room where we drank the whiskey, that the dancing star was the burning end of a cigarette. Neither of us remembered smoking the cigarettes, but we sure cleaned up quite a few of them.

My belief that whiskey affects memory was strengthened during my college years. My roommate and I mostly drank beer at parties, but occasionally indulged in Jack Daniel’s. The Jack Daniel’s nights sometimes led to a series of next-day phone calls intended to ascertain, say, why my car was parked in the middle of a courtyard, and why some guy I didn’t recognize was snoring in the back seat.

So yeah, I just always figured whiskey is bad for memory, at least in the short term.

Well, I should know better than to form medical opinions based on anecdotal evidence. Turns out whiskey doesn’t affect memory. I know this because I recently conducted a careful study comparing the effects of gin and whiskey on memory, and there was no statistically significant difference. That means we don’t need to be concerned with whiskey’s effect on the brain. I could even write a news article with the headline:


What, you say that’s a ridiculous conclusion? Well, of course it is. But it’s no more ridiculous than the conclusions from a study that generated this headline:


Beginning treatment with a statin was associated with a nearly fourfold increased risk of developing acute memory loss within 30 days in a retrospective cohort study …

Yeah, so that would lead me to conclude statins are bad for memory.

… but a similar increase in risk was seen in patients starting non-statin lipid-lowering drugs.

WTF?!! Does that somehow exonerate statins? Let’s read on.

Compared with non-users, both statin and non-statin lipid-lowering drug (LLD) use was found to be associated with acute memory loss in the weeks following treatment initiation, but there was no difference in memory loss when statins and non-statins were compared with each other, researcher Brian L. Strom, MD, of Rutgers University in Newark, N.J., and colleagues wrote online June 8 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

I see. So Dr. Strom compared the effects of whiskey and gin on memory loss and found them to be the same. No worries about whiskey, then. Next thing you know, Dr. Strom will be suggesting people who drink whiskey and gin just think they’re experiencing more memory loss.

The observation that all LLDs were associated with memory loss suggests that either all drugs used to lower lipid levels cause acute memory loss or that the observed memory loss in the study was due to detection bias, Strom said.

Head. Bang. On. Desk.

In a telephone interview with MedPage Today, Strom said it makes sense that patients on a new drug would be more likely to notice symptoms and attribute them to the drug, and they are also more likely to report such symptoms to their physician.

Riiiiight. Statins (and other lipid-lowering drugs) don’t actually cause memory loss, ya see. It’s just that people on statins who were going to have memory issues anyway are more likely to blame the drug. Kind of like one of those next-day phone conversations in college …

“Hello? Oh, hey, Mark. What? Of course I’m alive! Why wouldn’t I be? Uh-huh … uh-huh … I said WHAT?! YOU’VE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME! Well, hell no, I don’t remember! Look, just do me a favor and tell her it was the Jack Daniel’s talking!”

Several previous studies have shown acute memory loss associated with the use of statins, but others have not shown the association or have even shown improved memory in long-term statin users compared with non-users.

Strom noted that without the non-statin LLD control group in his study, the findings would have shown a strong association between statin initiation and short-term memory loss.

“In the absence of this control group, the finding would have been completely misleading,” he said.

Okay, to illustrate the deep and wide stupidity of that statement, imagine this quote about my whiskey-and-gin comparison study.

Naughton noted that without the gin-only control group in his study, the findings would have shown a strong association between whiskey and short-term memory loss.

“In the absence of this gin-only control group for comparison, the finding would have been completely misleading,” he said.

Strom said the study findings should reassure both patients and physicians who prescribe statins.

Naughton said the study findings should reassure both college students who drink whiskey and the liquor-store owners who sell the whiskey.

“This whole issue of short-term memory loss with statins is really a tempest in a teapot,” he said. “Statins are very effective drugs, and people should not veer away from them for fear of a short-term memory effect, especially given the data suggesting that long-term statin use improves memory.”

“This whole issue of short-term memory loss with whiskey is really a tempest in a teapot,” Naughton said. “Whiskey is a very effective drink, and people should not veer away from it for fear of a short-term memory effect, especially given the data suggesting that long-term whiskey use improves memory.”

Strom reported receiving research funding from AstraZeneca and Bristol-Myers Squibb and serving as a consultant to Abbott, AstraZeneca, Bayer Healthcare, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Novartis and Pfizer. A co-author reported receiving research funding from AstraZeneca and Bristol-Myers Squibb and serving as a consultant to AstraZeneca, Bayer Healthcare, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Merck.

Naughton reported receiving research funding from Jack Daniel’s and Old Grand-Dad and serving as consultant to Jim Beam, Johnnie Walker and Jameson’s. A co-author reported receiving research funding from Knob Creek and Barton Reserve and serving as a consulting to Glen Morangie, Glenfiddich, Canadian Club and Bushmill’s.

Here’s the bottom line: beating down your cholesterol is bad for your brain, whether you do it with a statin or another drug. Comparing statins to non-statin LLDs doesn’t change that … any more than drinking gin instead of whiskey will explain why that strange dude is snoring in the back seat of your car.


76 thoughts on “Statins Don’t Cause Memory Loss? Are These Researchers Drunk?

  1. Stephen Richardson

    I have already spent years trying to convince my father to quit taking statins. The problem is that he is a retired physician who knows way more than you or I about medicine. I guess my best hope at this point is that he might eventually just forget to take them.

  2. Andre Wiik

    One of the best comments to a science report I’ve ever read. Good analogies! The researchers aren’t drunk, they’re on statins 😉

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Indeed, but Dr. Strom wants us to believe people taking the drugs are just more likely to notice memory loss. That theory should keep his statin-making paymasters happy.

  3. Justin

    Statin-funded studies and articles really must have been on the upswing lately. There was another article that I read yesterday claiming “correlation doesn’t equal causation!!!” …when looking at the detrimental effects of statins. There was literally NO mention of applying that same logic to whether or not statins have positive effects. The article just took that “fact” for granted, and didn’t deem it worthy of further investigation.

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Yeah, I think they’re in full battle mode now that the word is getting out about the side effects. I read recently that in the U.K., only one-third of patients prescribed statins actually fill the prescription.

      1. Boundless

        [UK NHS] CMO calls for review of medicine safety and efficacy

        The goal, however, is not to improve actual safety and effectiveness, but to “restore public trust”.

        “She cited debates over the use of cholesterol lowering statin drugs for people at low risk of developing heart disease …”

        She’s obviously on board with everyone else getting statins.

        “I have, therefore, reluctantly come to the conclusion that we do need an authoritative independent report looking at how society should judge the safety and efficacy of drugs as an intervention.”

        So “society” might be found to be the problem.

        Someone give this twerp a mirror. labelled “The Problem”.

        1. Tom Naughton Post author

          Awesome. Let’s restore public trust in drugs that induce memory loss, muscle damage, liver damage and possibly diabetes.

  4. Linda

    Great post Tom! I have just sent it to my cousin in the UK who had been on statins because his other drugs raised his cholesterol!! Geesh!!! After two years of sending him all sorts of research and articles, including yours, plus my own experience of now having to walk with a walker because of statins, he finally quit taking them. Many times, I pointed out to him the detrimental effect of statins on the brain. I noticed that he really was not as sharp as he was pre-statins and pointed this out. He is still sent to a “cholesterol” doc by the NHS, and still fills his statin prescriptions, but tosses them, and just doesn’t tell the cholesterol doc. Very interesting that when he gave up his sugars and almost all carbs including wheat and grains, his cholesterol leveled out and his doc is satisfied now. “Grain Brain” by Dr. Perlmutter was a great influence on his current health. I heartily recommend it to anyone.

    Sadly, my cousin feels he has to keep his diet and non-use of statins to himself to not be shunned by his general practitioner. His GP believes none of the low carb, high fat “nonsense,” so my cousin just doesn’t mention why his health is so improved. It truly does take one death at a time for science to advance! Too bad that there are so many deaths of patients along with the charlatans who are causing it!

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Your cousin is probably adopting the best tactic. Arguing with a know-it-all doctor rarely has a positive outcome. So (as one doctor I heard say), nod your head, take the prescription, then don’t fill it.

    2. Thomas E.

      Might be the best tactic for your cousin. But at the end of the day the doctor is very possibly going to be making data out of antidotal evidence think, look at this patient, following my advice and doing perfect!

      It is a sad world we live in.

      The scary part, if, for some reason, the internet becomes fact checked by people like your cousin’s doctor, we may lose the wisdom of the masses we have fought to create.

      Gosh, I hope that does not happen.

  5. Onlooker

    That article was a bit, well, confused. To their credit the sub title is very accurate and points out the real issue here: that all cholesterol lowering drugs affect memory. But then they wrote the article to allow the (financially conflicted) study author to spin it as you’ve pointed out, while gliding right over the real point that should have been made.

    Really despicable.

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Yup, I could have forgiven them if the doc didn’t try to spin it as “people who take LLDs may simply be more likely to report memory problems.” Utter hogwash.

      1. Walter Bushell

        Maybe they had to spin it that way to get it published.

        The fact that they have published evidence that lowering cholesterol by drug hurts the brain is a plus for our side.

  6. Thomas E.

    One of the gentlemen I work with had a coronary incident a week back. They tried to perform Angioplasty but had issues getting to the blockages. Well, this guy, one of the best examples of a stereo typical native Texan who pretty well everyone in the building who knows him loves him, was on Statins several years ago, but went off them due to, you guessed it, memory issues and muscle fatigue.

    Anyway, before the operation the cardiac surgeon stated, from what I understand, “Don’t you wish now you did not go off the statins?”

    Even with the cardiac condition, if that was me on the table, I would have strangled the doctor.

    And for reference, sadly, my coworker enjoys the SAD (Standard America Diet), and never missed donut Wednesday here at work.

    Over the last few years, there has been an increasing number of people in my life who are suffering from 2 of the 3 biggest lies in my lifetime

    1) Calorie is a calorie (nutrients are not that important)
    2) Heart lipid hypothesis
    3) “I did not have sexual relations with that woman”

    Thanks again for you blog Tom!


    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      My dad did take statins, yet somehow ended up with near-total blockage in his coronary arteries. Tim Russert dutifully took his statins and died of a heart attack. No doc better try that argument on me.

  7. TJ the Grouch

    Sorry, but not all docs are dense. I quit taking statins over five years ago. Unlike the proverbial frog, I noticed that something wasn’t right with my thinking processes. Fortunately, it was early in the process and I was able able to regress to my normal stupidity in a couple of months. Never again will I touch that garbage!
    Greetings from south of Columbia!

  8. Tim Maitski

    I don’t know why they waste their time trying to tease out some conclusions from past studies. There are way too many confounding factors.

    Why not just do a simple study directly with three groups. A statin group, a LLD group and a group that gets a placebo pill in order to eliminate the “detection bias”.

  9. Wenchypoo

    This is Big Pharma trying desperately to hold onto the class of drugs that have paid their mortgages, and put their kids through college–and there’s nothing to replace it…except the NEW class of LDL-killers that are projected to cost $12,000 per person annually.

    Oh, and did you read that they’re looking to turn Metformin into some kind of anti-aging drug by hyping that it heads off all manner of “diseases of aging”? I think this will be the new $$ for Big Pharma—don’t be surprised when Metformin prices go through the roof, and are touted for everything from cholesterol problems to weight loss meds. According to them, EVERYTHING has a link to insulin resistance, and what better way to attack it all than to get to the heart of that?

    Diet? Exercise? Just pop a pill!

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Well, they’re half-right. High blood sugar is involved in many of the diseases of aging … but most of us don’t need to pill to fix that one.

    2. Thomas E.

      I agree, they are half right, there are a lot of issues with insulin resistance. The fact they are actually talking about insulin resistance does mean are we starting to make progress.

      If I may go a step further, any medicine that jacks around with your homeostasis worries me.

      They seem to still be figuring out more about caffeine, a drug of influence for how many centuries???

      The more I read, the more I think the first line drug of choice should be sustenance we put in our pie holes. And I doubt this is a new concept for most of the people here. But sadly, it is not profitable.

      Which leads me to completely agree with your last point. Fix your lifestyle with a simple pill.

    3. Jeanne

      No way. Metformin has been around long enough to be generic. Can’t crank up the price. But you see ads on TV for all the new blood sugar reducing meds, now those are the new moneymakers.

  10. Boundless

    re: … beating down your cholesterol is bad for your brain, whether you do it with a statin or another drug.

    … or attempt to do it via diet. Anyone still following the fatal folly of low-fat low-cholesterol advice is probably both seriously deficient in Omega 3 DHA&EPA, and overdosing on Omega 6 (industrial grain oils sold as “vegetable oils”).

    This is bad news for both heart and brain. Great if you want to become a vegetable.

    The wider advice here, never given by consensus medicine, is that treating symptoms is never a cure, and treating metrics with questionable correlations is unlikely to be a cure, and both are likely to lead to new side effects of their own.

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Yup. When I tried a very low-fat diet, I ended up feeling depressed. Now I can’t remember the last time I felt truly depressed … and I don’t take statins, so my memory isn’t faulty.

  11. The Older Brother


    I guess the possible upside is that it seems the turds are having to go to further and further extremes to find a way to market their goods. Smells a bit of desperation.

    Another unintended bonus may be that once everyone is calling BS on statins, the “experts” have already done us the favor of binding their non-statin LLD’s tightly together with the statins, which they were probably going to start pushing hard as the statins come off-patent!

    Kind of like the gin guys in your study maybe taking a look and saying “um, how about maybe could you just leave us out of it, instead of shooting both of our feet off?!”

    Cheers! (Literally)

  12. Stephen T.

    An item in today’s Times (UK) quotes a paper from John Ioannidis from Stanford saying that 97% of trials sponsored by drug companies are ‘positive’ about the product. Can we realistically expect anything else? Yet these are the trials that doctors rely on to make decisions.

    When I abandoned the low-fat diet I quickly felt more mentally alert and resilient. This surprised me and I then found a strong connection between low fat and anxiety and depression. Nina Teicholz talks about the same thing. The low fat diet and statins are slowly denying our brains an essential nutrient and memory loss is one result.

    A quarter of people prescribed statins abandon them in the first month and 75% drop them within the first year. The main reason quoted is side effects.

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Yup, and the shame of it is that many people who experience side effects DON’T realize the statin is causing them. As my mom found out, if you’re an elderly person who complains of muscle pain, the doc will probably attribute it to old age and prescribe a painkiller instead of blaming the statin.

      1. Piper

        My Dad’s memory degraded so rapidly and badly that I thought he was developing Alzheimer’s or some other form of dementia and I’d need to find a nursing home for him because it was getting that bad. I asked what meds he was on and sure enough, there was a statin. I plied him with studies from your site and Jimmy’s Facebook, DAd stopped the statin, and he’s now back to normal and many of the other side effects are gone. His doc is trying to convince him to restart the statin because his LDL went up after stopping the statin……to 109 😐

        1. Tom Naughton Post author

          So glad you recognized the problem in time. I think the high-dose Lipitor hastened my Dad’s decline from Alzheimer’s. In his early sixties, he had episodes of profound confusion that lasted about a day. I later read on Dr. Duane Graveline’s site that he had those while on statins.

          1. Piper

            I’m thankful I’ve followed your site for a while now after watching Fathead–I doubt I’d have known the side effects otherwise!

  13. Linda

    No telling where I’d be now if I hadn’t read Dr. Graveline’s article “My Statin Story.” I never had pain before statins, and then all of a sudden, one month into taking a statin, I had terrible pain in one hip joint and walking became difficult. My doc decided I had developed arthritis and prescribed a painkiller “till I could get a hip replacement.” Somehow, I ran across Dr. Graveline’s website, Space Doc and found his article and that saved me! I knew that sudden pain and difficulty walking after starting a statin one month earlier was not arthritis! My doc convinced me to stay on the statin and that lasted one more month. Only two months on statins took me from being an active nurse to barely able to walk and function! I was forced to retire before I was ready. Had I not found you, Tom, and through you, the truth about statins, I would probably be a blithering idiot in a wheelchair! As it is, I have permanent damage, walking with a walker, but with the statin gone, the pain has left; and my diet has improved my health immensely! I cannot thank you enough for the good that you do!

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Thank God for the internet and the Wisdom of Crowds. Sorry you’ve got the permanent damage, but as you said, at least you didn’t end up in a wheelchair.

      1. Firebird

        Off topic somewhat. I noticed that the initial reports from the Charleston shooting said the suspect was taking a psychotropic drug called suboxone. The news outlets discussed this briefly. Even Sonjay Gupta declared the drug safe and uneventful (while they ramp up the “he was a pot head” talk). I bring this up because I spoke to an EMT about this and correlated that a lot of the shooters in these incidents are on some form of anti-depressant. He said that he noticed it, too, and was well aware of the dangers of suboxone. He said, “I’ve seen it all to often in my line of work. It is dangerous, mood altering and people on it are prone to violence. I will go by what I see on a daily basis instead of what they report on TV.”

        Just an example of the Wisdom of Crowds.

        1. Tom Naughton Post author

          That could be, but I think we need to be cautious about drawing conclusions from the correlation. It could just be that mentally unstable people (the kind who end up going on a shooting rampage) are more likely to be prescribed those drugs.

          1. Boundless

            re: … we need to be cautious about drawing conclusions from the correlation.

            Sure, but we also need to be asking why these mass murder events are now more common than historically (say, pre-Ancel, and ignoring the rise of certain cutthroat cults whose dogma demands such actions).

            It rather looks to me like we have a compounded problem:
            1. Low fat mania leading to neuro impairment.
            2. Gut dysbiosis leading to neuro impairment.
            3. Perhaps some involvement from food exorphins.
            4. Consensus medicine being clueless about 1, 2 & 3.
            5, Various cultural developments I won’t wander off into.
            6. Prescription of meds that purport to control the symptoms (behavior).
            7. Fully realized fine print side effects.

            re: It could just be that mentally unstable people (the kind who end up going on a shooting rampage) are more likely to be prescribed those drugs.

            Sure, but how did they get that way.

            Speaking as someone who lately has had a relative expire needlessly due to fully realized fine print side effects.

            1. Tom Naughton Post author

              All good points, and after reading “Anatomy of an Epidemic,” I’m highly suspicious of psychiatric drugs. Many were declared safe and effective after short trials that can’t possibly determine the long-term effects.

              I just don’t want to assume that the drug causes violent outbursts directly, at least not based on a correlation.

            2. Boundless

              re: I just don’t want to assume that the drug causes violent outbursts directly, …

              Yet they seem to be involved in every recent case I can think of that isn’t otherwise explained by Medieval dogma – Aurora, Columbine, Newtown, Virginia Tech.

              You have to dig for the presence of the psychoactives, because mainstream propaganda routinely ignores it (in addition to offending sponsors, all their kids are probably on this junk, and they don’t want to go there).

              Just coincidence, I’m sure.

              To circle around to the topic here, you also never see statin as the cause on a death certificate, even though it is, in millions of cases.

          2. gollum

            I will not comment on the production values or whether the story checks out at all.

            HOWEVER even in less litigious Central Europe, drug leaflets for some antidepressants do mention suicide as a problem, typically when the activity level gets upped but the mood is still grim, cautioning shrink against that (as if as if)

            I also think your conclusions from this anecdotal data appear a bit premature. You lump Scotch, Irish Whiskey, and Phenol Malt all into the generic “Whisky” category. A follow-up study should focus on establishing their effects. I volunteer, please deliver the Jemstone and the Arbek, will you? I promise, should memory loss occur, I will just forget about the study results.

            1. Tom Naughton Post author

              Well, why shouldn’t you? Drug companies forget about study results all the time.

  14. john

    In 1992, at the age of 44, my PCP prescribed for me statins because I has a high cholesterol (202). Within a week of taking them, I felt like I had been beat up by a gang. I called the doctor and he said, “You got to suck it up. These medicines will save you from a heart attack!” I figured, I might as well get a heart attack rather than live like this for the rest of my life. So I dumped the statins and the PCP.

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      You made the right choice. Statins prevent — maybe, given that only the positive studies are published — one heart attack for every 100 men who take them … and that’s only among men who’ve already had a heart attack or have a whole slew of risk factors for heart attack.

    2. Walter Bushell

      “One crowded hour of glorious life is worth an age without a name.”
      ―Thomas Osbert Mordaunt

      If we lose our memory and cognition in what sense have we survived?

    3. Paladin13

      I tried statins twice after my heart surgery (born with a defective aortic valve, didn’t know it until I went into heart failure). I had memory loss and excruciating joint pain. I did an experiment for a year. I switched from using butter to cook my eggs, hamburgers, etc., to lard, yes lard. After a year I had my cholesterol checked and it had dropped over 20 points to 240 from the previous test over a year before. Doctors know very little about nutrition. My cardiologist is open-minded about things and even if he had ever threatened to dump me as a patient unless I went back on the statins, I would not have gone back on them. And I never will, unless they’re proven to make a man look like George Clooney or Brad Pitt. I remember when the high threshold for cholesterol was 300, now it’s what, 240 or even lower? I hear those cash registers at the drug companies chachinging all the time.

      1. Tom Naughton Post author

        Now the threshold is 200. I once had a doctor tell me my cholesterol was “elevated” because the total was 203.

    4. Walter Bushell

      202 is mildly dangerous, by statistics for men. If it prescribes like a quack, its a quack.

  15. Armando

    Whatever happened to the “Hypocratic oath”? At what point in time did medicine became a business of greed? They are messing with people’s well being. Like I have said before, stantins made me quit my job. Half of the time I was feeling lathargic and depressed. I was alreasy depressed and taking anti-depressants, but pre-statins, the meds were doing their job. After going against my endocrinolist advice and being broke, I stopped taking statins and felt so much better.

    Until everyone gets on board that cholesterol is natural and enssential for life, medecine cannot progress. I am have become distrusting of the pharmaceutical companies. I was watching an US tv show online and I was watching their ads. I was frighten by their drug ads. There was this drug to treat a skin condition, but one of its side effects was, “might weaken the immune system.” I said to myself, “holy crap, it gives you Aids!” But you will have nice!

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      I guess the advertising works or they wouldn’t do it. But given all the side effects mentioned in almost every ad, my reaction is “Why the hell would anyone take this drug?”

    1. Tom Naughton Post author

      Yup, as the patents on statins expire, look for lots of media articles extolling the superiority of these new and more expensive drugs.

  16. Walter Bushell

    Those “scientists” and reviewers are not drunk. They are on statins.

    That explains everything.

    1. Boundless

      re: Those “scientists” and reviewers are not drunk. They are on statins. That explains everything.

      That’s not just a joke. Committed statinators probably are on statins, because they’ve fallen for and parrot the propaganda that these potions have prophylactic potential.

      They are probably also on low fat diets (low in Omega 3 DHA & EPA), are full-time glycemic, with ample amounts of mind-altering wheat, and flat out inflammatory ‘foods’, and paying no attention to gut biome.

      Their brains are very likely in a state of serious malfunction. Many of them may even be taking stimulants or anti-depressants in a vain attempt to compensate for the damage wrought by multiple self-inflicted neuro-adverse dietary choices.

  17. Walter Bushell

    Here is the coverage in the NYT which by title endorsed the conclusion.

    But the comments are scathing.

    Ah, looks like they deleted the comments. Embarrassed or don’t want
    to rock the boat?

    Strange why whole classes of drugs don’t cause mental confusion, but
    statins do.

    But they can’t think that drugging statins down actively harmful.

    Es lässt sich nicht obwohl sein. — It doesn’t let itself be thought.

  18. Mike Bashanak

    My dad is suffering badly even on 2.5 mg of Crestor. These drugs will be off the market in 10 years and listed as toxic.

  19. DorkVader

    I was on a mix of statins and fenofibrate for almost 10 years. I was prescribed these drugs at the age of 40. The first time I stopped after persistent muscle pain in my leg. After a few days the pain was gone. Moreover I felt much sharper mentally as well. Then started taking these drugs again and a few years later I was so absent-minded that even my wife started worrying. I then decided to stop taking these drugs and again after a few weeks I felt like I was my old self again. Now I haven’t been taking statins for 2,5 years but started taking fenofibrate 6 months ago – no memory issues experienced yet. I wish I could start taking statins without the side effects of memory loss because I do believe that statins reduce the risk for heart attacks. I strongly disagree with the outcome of the study conducted by Doctor Tea Pot these reported side effects of memory loss induced by statins really exist.

  20. Jack Lattimore

    The problem is not necessarily statin drugs, but any drug that lowers cholesterol. Hence, non-statin cholesterol lowering drugs also have been found to cause memory loss. That is because cholesterol is needed by the body to function properly, particularly neuro-muscular function. When cholesterol is lowered too much your body can no longer function properly and you have memory and muscular problems. The larger problem, and here is the real scandal, high cholesterol is a “disease” concocted by medical doctors. Their theory that high cholesterol is the cause of heart disease is based on a flawed study over 50 years old. It is a crime what prebscribers of statin and cholesterol lowering drugs are doing to otherwise healthy people. Me, I’ll take my chances with “high” cholesterol and die active and alert at my 3-score and ten or whatever I am alotted. Compare that with 60, 70, and 80+ plus year olds whose lives are shells because of memory loss and muscle wasting. But hey – they have low cholesterol!

  21. ReverendRusty

    I’m wondering like Jack Lattimore if the problem is statins, or the problem is too low cholesterol, but the solution is the same: stop taking them. I have a problem, which took me many years to figure out – I actually get withdrawal symptoms – extreme depression (which I have never experienced under any other circumstances) if I stop taking statins. Took me a while to get the connection – for example, hiking through the desert, I assumed it was dehydration. While on another medication, I attributed to that other medication. In this and other cases I later realized that I had temporarily stopped taking the statins. So these drugs DO mess with our brains. Now my coworkers have pointed out that they see my performance changing (degrading) and are asking me what is wrong. Friday I go to the Doctor to get off this stuff.

    1. b2curious

      Do let us know how that goes. I’d like to know if your memory improves once you’re off of the statins for a while.

      1. CARL

        The repair to the neurotransmitter is a slow and lengthy process. It depends on how long you have been on the statin. Sadly for some people the damage is irreversible and are left crippled from their use.

  22. b2curious

    You may want to come with a different fictitious study rather than the gin vs. whiskey study. Why? Because gin and whiskey work by the same mechanism, and according to this article, which covered the same statin vs. other LLD drugs, quotes Dr. Strom as saying the following about why he compared the two “These are drugs that work by completely different mechanisms, and it’s not biologically plausible that they’d have the same effects,” To which I say: Riiiight, because since they work by completely different mechanisms, they couldn’t possibly have the same effect – you know, like, I don’t know, lowering cholesterol. Or hey, maybe it’s the effect of lowering cholesterol that has the effect of worsened short term memory? Here’s an idea, since both the statin and other LLD new medication users reported worsened short term memory, which the non user group (see the CBS article) didn’t notice, lets put the non user group on a placebo, that way everyone is on a “new medication.” Lets see how that affects the results. I’m willing to bet that you’ll get pretty much the same results you did with this study. I’m pretty sure that the statin and the LLD groups will have a statistically significant difference when compared to the placebo group.

  23. CARL

    I stopped taking Statin five years ago and the recovery is about equal to the length of time I was on the drug. I listed 26 different problems I had while taking Statins. My doctors told me it was part of the aging process. Bull! I actually feel reborn which is a strange thing to say but my life on so many levels is so vastly improved, it is what I feel. The only cause or link betweeen of all these problems when lumped together can only lead one to one conclusion, Statins are harmful, not to mention the years of life I was robbed of by their use.

  24. Dot

    I’m a 39 year old female diagnosed with high cholesterol a year ago. Other than the Cholesterol,I am fairly healthy and try to stay fit, been running 3 days a week for years. As I’m studying for my law degree, I decided to avoid taking statins as I need my memory thank you very much. So I went for the alternative, non-statin cholesterol lowering meds . My memory is definitely being affected, so I will have to stop them for now . Rather than denying and dismissing what people are saying and their experiences, there needs to be more research on how these lipid lowering drugs actually work on the brain. Are we all crazy and experiencing mass hysteria? I think not.

    1. Bob Niland

      re: …female diagnosed with high cholesterol a year ago.

      High what?
      HDL you want to be high (over 60 mg/dL).
      TG you want to be low (under 60)
      LDL-C is a joke.
      VLDL-C is an insulting joke.
      TC is relatively meaningless.

      Get an actual lipoprotein test, such as NMR advanced lipoprotein panel. If your doctor won’t run it, get a real doctor (or use a walk-in lab, nanny state permitting).

      re: So I went for the alternative, non-statin cholesterol lowering meds.

      If that’s red yeast rice, be aware that it’s essentially Lovastatin, of uncertain dose, and easily with all the same side effects. If so, taking CoQ10?

      And presumably you are aware that such unconfounded data as we have suggests zero net benefit of statins to females.

      Even if you have an actual lipidemia (or genetic tendency) as hinted by tests like Apoe or Lp(a), these can in most cases be managed by diet alone.


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