How do prescribing doctors anticipate the effect of statins?
2011 (English)In: Journal of Evaluation In Clinical Practice, ISSN 1356-1294, E-ISSN 1365-2753, Vol. 17, no 3, 420-428 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Statins are a lipid-lowering treatment, prescribed frequently to prevent cardiovascular events. The objective of this study was to explore how doctors anticipate the effect of statins and what factors are associated with their willingness to initiate treatment.
A total of 330 Swedish cardiologists, internists and general practitioners were asked to consider two hypothetical patient cases, one with and one without previous coronary heart disease. Based on these cases, the respondents answered questions about their willingness to initiate treatment and what effects they might expect. The expectation of effect was assessed in two ways: (1) the absolute risk reduction of myocardial infarction in 1000 patients treated with statins for 5 years; and (2) statins' average effect on increased life expectancy. The doctors' beliefs about absolute risk reduction were compared with results from clinical trials.
Most doctors had a suboptimal expectation about absolute risk reduction; only about one-third had expectations in the range supported by evidence-based data. There were different views about statins' ability to prolong life: that is, average gain in life expectancy due to treatment was believed to be 2 years in the primary patient case, and 3 years in the second patient case. The doctors' beliefs about statins' ability to prolong life were associated significantly with their willingness to initiate treatment.
The overall results imply that doctors have varying and suboptimal understanding of the effect of statins. This may inhibit the goal of integrating clinical research into clinical practice.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2011. Vol. 17, no 3, 420-428 p.
absolute risk reduction, HMG-CoA reductase inhibitors, doctors, prevention. statins, treatment expectations
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject Social Medicine
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-122139DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2753.2010.01442.xISI: 000290581000002PubMedID: 20545813OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-122139DiVA: diva2:308495