Earlier this year, the FDA placed a warning label on the class of LDL cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins.
The label states that “increases in glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c) and fasting serum glucose levels have been reported with statin use,” but continued to say that “FDA continues to believe that the cardiovascular benefits of statins outweigh these small increased risks.”
This action came as a response to trials data showing an increased incidence of type 2 diabetes diagnoses in patients who had been using statins compared to those using placebo. Combining data from multiple studies suggests that on average, 1 in 255 people on statins for four years were diagnosed with diabetes.
One in 255 may not seem like a lot, but considering approximately 24 million Americans are on one form of statin or another, that would translate to almost 100,000 new cases of type 2 diabetes (assuming none of the patients prescribed a statin already had diabetes).