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J Res Med Sci. 2019 Feb 25;24:15. doi: 10.4103/jrms.JRMS_100_18. eCollection 2019.

Prescribing statins among patients with type 2 diabetes: The clinical gap between the guidelines and practice.

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Department of Clinical Pharmacy, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Malaysia.
Endocrinology Clinics, Department of Internal Medicine, Penang General Hospital, Penang, Malaysia.



Statins are recommended for cardiovascular protection for people with diabetes (high-risk groups). This study aimed to evaluate the gap between the guidelines of statin utilization and clinical practice among outpatients with type 2 diabetes regarding the patient's age and gender, to assess if this preventive drug is being satisfactorily utilized or not.

Materials and Methods:

In this cross-sectional study, patients aged <40 or >75 years, pregnant patients, and patients with type 1 diabetes, human immunodeficiency virus, or liver cirrhosis were excluded. Demographics, laboratory parameters, and prevalence of exposure to statin therapy were evaluated. This study was guided by the 2013 American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association cholesterol guidelines. IBM SPSS software was used for data management.


The study cohort involved 576 patients, with age being 58.3 ± 8.9 years. There were 50.5% of females and 49.5% of males. Overall 81.1% of patients aged 58.8 ± 8.8 years were statin users and 18.9% of patients aged 56.2 ± 9 years were statin nonusers. About 83.2% of females and 78.9% of males were prescribed statins. Statin medications included simvastatin 79.2%, atorvastatin 11.6%, lovastatin 5.8%, rosuvastatin 2.1%, and pravastatin 1.3%. Statin users' and nonusers' adherence was 56.5%, and 41.3% (P = 0.004), respectively. The adherence to medication plan of females and males was 55.7% and 51.6%, respectively (P = 0.004).


Patients with diabetes who are at high risk of cardiovascular events, exposure to statin treatment is significantly less than perfect position both in females and males. Nearly one-fifth of the patients with type 2 diabetes are not using statins despite therapeutic necessities.


Age; Malaysia; clinical gap; gender; practice guidelines; statin medication; type 2 diabetes

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