Statins Protect Against Kidney Stones

Use of the lipid-lowering drugs is associated with 43% and 47% decreased odds of new stones in recurrent stone formers and stone naïve patients.
Use of the lipid-lowering drugs is associated with 43% and 47% decreased odds of new stones in recurrent stone formers and stone naïve patients.

SAN DIEGO—Individuals who take statins may be a lower risk of kidney stone formation, according to study findings presented at the American Urological Association 2016 annual meeting.

The study, by Andrew Cohen, MD, of the University of Chicago Medical Center, and colleagues, compared 1,785 recurrent stone formers and 97,563 patients with no history of stones. Patients prescribed statins were significantly older (60.7 vs. 51.9 years) and were more obese (body mass index [BMI] 29.2 vs. 28.1 kg/m2).

In the stone-former group, new stones developed in 33.8% of those on statins compared with 53% of non-statin users. In the stone-naïve patients, new stones developed in 3.8% of those on statins compared with 4.7% of non-statin users.

In multivariable analysis, statin use was associated with a significant 43% and 47% decreased odds of new stones among stone naïve patients and recurrent stone formers, respectively, compared with no statin use, after adjusting for race, BMI, gender, and comorbidities.

“Our data substantiates previous work suggesting that statins are protective against renal stone formation,” the investigators concluded in their study abstract. “Their protective effect is greater among recurrent stone formers compared to stone naïve patients.”

A prior study of 57,232 subjects with hyperlipidemia and 1,904 with nephrolithiasis demonstrated that patients taking statins had a significant 49% decreased odds of stone formation in adjusted analyses, according to a report in Clinical Nephrology (2013;79;351-355). 

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