Vol 2, No 5 (2013)
Review article
Published online: 2013-10-25

open access

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What is known about diabetogenic effects of statins?

Longina Kłosiewicz-Latoszek, Barbara Cybulska
Diabetologia Kliniczna 2013;2(5):178-184.


Since some time the evidence has been accumulated on the diabetogenic effects of statins. These findings from clinical and observational studies are spread between doctors and patients, and part of them may be afraid to prescribe or take these drugs. In this situation we have recognized that real knowledge on this side effect of statins is of importance, especially that they are widely used because well-established clinical benefit in cardiovascular disease prevention. In the article authors have described the results of clinical studies and meta-analyses, as well as possible mechanisms by which statin therapy may cause diabetes (impaired pancreatic β cell insulin secretion and increasing insulin resistance). In conclusion it should be stressed that however statins may worsen glucose metabolism, especially in susceptible population (women, elderly people, and presence of metabolic syndrome elements) their cardiovascular benefi t outweigh the risk of diabetes development. This statins are still recommended for cardiovascular event prevention as the drug of choice. However the monitoring the fasting glucose should be considered in the people who are at risk of diabetes.