Objectives: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of statins in decreasing cardiovascular events in women and men.
Background: Published data reviews have suggested that statins might not be as effective in women as in men in decreasing cardiovascular events.
Methods: Published data searches and contacts with investigators identified 18 randomized clinical trials of statins with sex-specific outcomes (N = 141,235, 40,275 women, 21,468 cardiovascular events). Odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for cardiovascular events were calculated for women and men separately with random effects meta-analyses.
Results: The cardiovascular event rate was lower among those randomized to statin intervention than in those randomized to control (low-dose statin in 4 studies, placebo in 11 studies, usual care in 3 studies). The benefit of statins was statistically significant in both sexes, regardless of the type of control, baseline risk, or type of endpoint and in both primary and secondary prevention. All-cause mortality was also lower with statin therapy both in women and men without significant interaction by sex.
Conclusions: Statin therapy is associated with significant decreases in cardiovascular events and in all-cause mortality in women and men. Statin therapy should be used in appropriate patients without regard to sex.