Changes to the statin label: What they really mean


The FDA has made changes to the safety label for statins, the cholesterol-lowering drugs that over 20 million Americans take in hopes of reducing their chances of having a heart attack or stroke. When the changes were announced in February 2012, it reignited a smoldering debate about the benefits and risks of statins.

If you want our bottom line, here it is: the vast majority of people taking statins should continue to take them, but some additional attention to blood sugar levels is warranted. And, as with any medication, if you're taking a statin and experience side effects, you shouldn't hesitate to contact your doctor.

Interested in more details? Read on.

Increases in blood sugar levels

Published: May, 2012

The safety information for statins now says that increases in HbA1C and fasting serum glucose levels have been reported. HbA1C is a blood test that reflects average blood sugar levels; serum glucose is just another way of saying blood sugar.

To continue reading this article, you must log in.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
Learn more about the many benefits and features of joining Harvard Health Online »