A recent Cochrane Review update was published to assess the clinical efficacy and safety of statins in treating Alzheimer’s Disease and Vascular Dementia.
“Statins for the treatment of dementia” is an update of a Cochrane Review originally published in 2010. Its primary objective is to assess the clinical efficacy and safety of statins in treating Alzheimer’s Disease and Vascular Dementia.
The Cochrane researchers identified four studies (one more than the 2010 review) meeting the inclusion criteria of high quality, randomised double-blinded placebo-controlled trials with cognition measured as an outcome. There were no studies found on the effect of statins on people with vascular dementia.
The pooled data from the four trials found no evidence that statins help in the treatment of cognitive decline in dementia (as indicated by significant improvement in behaviour, global function or activities of daily living).
A secondary objective of the review was to see if a treatment effect was dependent on cholesterol level, ApoE genotype or cognitive level. The studies did not report any differences depending on ApoE or cognitive level. However, patients with elevated cholesterol levels were excluded from the two larger studies for safety and ethical reasons, and one of the smaller studies reported that people with higher cholesterol level at baseline experienced most cognitive benefit. However, this study was too small to show clinical significance.