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J Antimicrob Chemother. 2008 Apr;61(4):774-85. doi: 10.1093/jac/dkn019. Epub 2008 Feb 7.

Statins for infection and sepsis: a systematic review of the clinical evidence.

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1
Alfa Institute of Biomedical Sciences (AIBS), Athens, Greece. m.falagas@aibs.gr

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Statins are currently used for hyperlipidaemia control and considered useful for protection from cardiovascular events. In addition, there is increasing evidence for the potential use of statins in preventing and treating infections.

METHODS:

We performed a systematic review of the literature that compared the outcome between statin and non-statin users among patients suffering from sepsis or other infections. The relevant studies were identified from searches of PubMed, Scopus and the Cochrane Library databases.

RESULTS:

Twenty studies were identified (13 of them were retrospective), out of which 9 examined the use of statins in patients with sepsis, bacteraemia or multiorgan dysfunction syndrome, 4 community-acquired pneumonia (CAP), 1 ICU infections, 2 other bacterial infections and 4 viral infections. Eleven studies had data regarding mortality as the main outcome: 8 showed decreased mortality in statin users (3 of them reported on patients with bacteraemia), 2 showed no difference in mortality and 1 reported an increased mortality in patients who received statins. Seven studies examined the risk of sepsis as the main outcome; six of these studies showed a decreased risk of sepsis in patients receiving statins, whereas one study found no difference.

CONCLUSIONS:

The majority of the studies suggest that statins may have a positive role in the treatment of patients with sepsis and infection. However, the majority of the reviewed studies have the inherent methodological limitations of retrospective studies. Conclusions regarding this important clinical question should wait for the results of ongoing relevant randomized controlled trials.

PMID:
18263570
DOI:
10.1093/jac/dkn019
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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