A New Perspective on Nonprescription Statins: An Opportunity for Patient Education and Involvement

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

10 Scopus citations


Education of the public and encouragement of patients' involvement in their own health care have been repeatedly proved effective means of increasing health awareness, promoting lifestyle modifications, and improving early disease detection in a variety of clinical scenarios. Despite substantial efforts from different public and private organizations to educate the population on cardiovascular risk, coronary heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States, and its prevalence continues to grow. Therefore, alternative approaches with the potential to elicit a meaningful impact in the community deserve consideration. A nonprescription statin program could provide consumers with a tool of proved benefit in cardiovascular risk prevention. The magnitude of the target population (millions of subjects with intermediate to high risk), as well as the safety and efficacy profile of lovastatin 20 mg, support the consideration of this drug for "over-the-counter" availability. Moreover, a nonprescription statin program could represent a unique opportunity not only to enhance patients' involvement in primary prevention but also to reinforce the education of the public and to encourage interaction with health care providers. The success of such a program will undoubtedly require precise labeling of the risks and benefits of the therapy, as well as active support and participation from major medical organizations. In conclusion, nonprescription statin availability, through enhanced unique patients' involvement, offers the potential for enormous public health benefit.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)907-910
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Cardiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2007


Dive into the research topics of 'A New Perspective on Nonprescription Statins: An Opportunity for Patient Education and Involvement'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this