Should i be on 40mg or 20mg Statins or neither?

I am 35 yrs old male, Smoked pack of 10 a day for about 20 years (since i left school), and i don't drink. I had a sharp left sided chest pain radiating to the jaw lasting 10 seconds and sharp pain to left arm. Initially associated with breathless and sweating. I did not have recent cough or fever. ECG showed NSR. Clinical examination was unremarkable. Serial Troponin levels -WNL.

From Hospital I was given 7 days of GTN (spray) and Aspirin to take every morning.

OPA Cardiac CT angiogram and OPA exercise tolerance test. (appointments will be sent via post)

To see GP regarding smoking cessation and lipid profile (Triglycerides 7.1, Cholesterol 5.2, Serum Glucose 6.9)

Above is what was written in GP notes.

My own DR was not at surgery, another DR was there while he is away.

He prescribed to me Aspirin 75mg 1 tab to take every morning and Simvastatin 40mg 1 tab to take every evening without reading the notes as he did not have anything on the system yet, but went with what i told him verbally about my Triglycerides and cholesterol levels.

Since i had this event, and after speaking to DR at the hospital i have stopped smoking and changed my diet strictly to Boiled Veg, grilled chicken breast and Fish which are high in omega3.

My moms cholesterol level is much higher then mine and she is on 20mg simvastatin tabs. (i know everyone is different) Which got me concerned if i really should be on 40mg or 20mg, or neither as i have changed my diet and don't smoke anymore.

at the moment i am only taking Aspirin every morning with breakfast and have not touched or taken simvastatin. although i have them prescribed to me. After reading side effects to simvastatin and knowing my moms cholesterol is higher but shes taking lower 20mg tabs. I am kind of scared to take them, and don't want to get anything else wrong with me as otherwise I believe i am fit and healthy. although i am a little overweight

4 Replies

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  • Well done for giving up smoking and altering your diet, but you should take the statin as prescribed to reduce your cholesterol. Be careful with the strength of different types which do not necessarily compare. The problem with statins is they can produce side effects, but work with your GP to get the right one for you. I was put on Rusavastatin after problems with atorvastatin and was put on a graduated dose initially to counter side effects ie. initially 5mg ever other day, then up to 5mg every day, then 5 one day and 10 the next and up to 10mg per day now. I think GPs tend to prescribe simvastatin because it it cheapest for them! Good luck, be assertive with your GP if you insist he/she has to comply. You could ask to be put on Omacor which is the purest form of omega 3. Avoid crisps, cheese, pies, pastries etc.

  • Hi,

    I would double check your figures. Have you got cholesterol and triglycerides correct? As Traci says 7 is exceptionally high for triglycerides.

    Your glucose is on the high side at 6.9 putting you into the pre diabetes slot. The good news is that you can reduce this with diet and exercise..it does work, been there, done it, wearing the T-shirt.

    40mg is the usual starting dose for simvastatin. You could discuss with your GP any other options, diet, lower dose etc...but that is up to you and him to decide. Giving up smoking is the most important single factor. Good luck.

  • No offence, but man-up a little. I had a huge heart attack at 36 - which left me with an aneurysm in the left ventrical. I gave up smoking and drinking etc and now run 5 miles a day because I want to remain alive as long as possible. Just take the statins - it's actually a low dosage of a pretty benign drug anyway. Also, very few people have any adverse reaction to them at all. Good luck.

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