Radio 2 Today

Not really on topic but I wonder if anybody was listening to Jeremy VIne today on Radio 2. I missed the first part of the discussion but I think it centred around statins and whether good or bad and also side effects. I won't go into the former which can be quite emotive but I found it interesting that one scientist was saying that when people read the paper slips which come with medicines they often get the side effects even if they were not taking that drug! He called it the reverse placebo effect.

Regulars will know my views on such matters and how I advise against reading too much on the internet but I found this comment most interesting. Never under estimate the power of your mind, both good and bad!

14 Replies

  • Didn't hear the programme - but this reminds me that when I was a student, the people studying medicine seemed to suffer every illness/disease/condition under the sun. Which one it was all depended on what they were studying at the time!

    Knowledge may be power, but a little knowledge sure can be a dangerous thing.

  • Oh yes I wished I wasn't a senior nurse when my problems started. I am the patient from hell ha ha

  • Me too.

  • The mind is a weird and wonderful thing... I want someone to invent a pill that has a list of side effects that include increased energy, losing just enough weight, happiness, and perfect health. Sounds like it can be made really cheaply from sugar as long as the side effects are prominently listed!

  • In the words of my husband's old aunt 'old age never comes alone!'. I repeat this because sometime in my fifties (for me anyway) aches and pains started but I didn't take any notice or medication at the time and put it down to ageing. Then I was diagnosed with AFib at 64, and life changed. I had to work hard to separate my huge anxiety about the condition with how I felt physically at the time, and not attribute every twinge to medication or AFib - there is definitely a 'before' and 'after'. Although I do investigate long term use effects on drugs suggested, I deliberately don't read the list of side effects that comes with medication for the exact reason Bob outlines!

  • I didn't hear the programme but it set me thinking......... Has the Jeremy Vine show ever tackled the theme of AF in its weekly medical spot? This would be a good way of raising the profile of what seems - for some people at least - to be a hidden (and underrated) disease.

  • Hi Bob it was all over the news yesterday about statins, called the Nocebo Effect, people reporting side effects simply because of publicity. But tests show they get the "side effects" even when taking dummy pills without any active ingredients.

    Be wel


  • Yes, it was very interesting. And very true. I try not to read the leaflets now!

  • Similar article in Weds (this week) newspaper

  • Newspaper was Daily Mail

  • Thanks Bob, it's really all about training the mind to be positive whatever path you take or don't; not easy of course but it can be done slowly. I decided on Flecainide but in the early days was reluctant to swallow every one. I am a bit better now as each day free from AF I force myself to recall the highlights of the day and give, reluctantly, credit to the drug.

  • Hi Bob

    I wonder if you could tell me what vitamins you take. I would like to start taking some I had a stroke 2 years ago recovered well and had a ablation 2 years ago this March. I am on 20 mg a day xaretto , 1.25 bisoptolol, 2 candesartan, omeprazole, and 80g atorvastatin but feel dreadful only just changed to this strength tablet was on 40g of simvastatin which was ok just advised that atorvastatin was a better newer drug. I don't know if I should go back to simvastatin or ask to stay on same drug but lower dose? My cholesterol level on 40 g simvastatin was 4 doctor said perfect. Do you take statins if so what strength? Also I have never had high blood pressure the doctor said taking the medication is good for my heart.

    Was thinking Of taking Q10 and fish oil but not sure if you can on medication.

    Would appreciated some advice if anyone out there know any information on above.

    Many thanks,


  • I always tell people that they MUST discuss any supplements with their medical team as we are not qualified to advise on such things. What I take or not is up to me if it suits me and may not be for others. What I would say is educated yourself about what you are taking and why. Obviously the anticoagulant is due to prior stroke, the bisoprolol to reduce heart rate. the candesartan for blood pressure and the statin for cholesterol although doctors say it is an anti inflammatory drug and helps the heart. My only comment would be that if your ablation was successful then why are you still taking bisoprolol? My own GP is ambivalent about statins leaving the final decision to me and agrees that it is about balance and if the drugs make you feel bad then one can consider not taking them. I don't want to live another thirty years for sure (other than to screw my pension company lol) so maybe best to enjoy the time I have (maybe another 15 or 20?) with too manay drug side effects.

    End of the day it is all personal.

  • Thank you Bob for reply. I have been to doctor and he has lowered my statin from 80 to 20 so see how that goes. As for bisoprolol I will ask doctor if I still need to take it they said in the past it had heart benefits but not sure why.


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