A questionnaire assessment of physical function in hyperlipidemic patients

Regina M Taylor-Gjevre, Anthony Wassef, Bindu Nair, John A Gjevre, Thomas Wilson


Background: A spectrum of myopathic manifestations has been recognized as associated with lipid lowering drug therapy (LLT), but their effect on quality of life and physical functioning is uncertain. We conducted a prospective cohort study in which physical functioning was the dependent variable, in patients with and without exposure to LLT.

Methods: Consecutive patients attending a risk reduction clinic were invited to participate in a questionnaire study which included demographic data, muscular symptoms, the SF-36 Physical Function Score (PF), and the modified Health Assessment Questionnaire (mHAQ). Laboratory and co-morbidity data was recorded.

Results: Of 117 consecutive patients invited to participate, 112 consented. Of these, 81 were receiving statins and/or fibrates as LLT and 31 were participating in a non-pharmacologic therapeutic program (NPT) of diet and exercise therapy. The mean age for the total population was 56.7 years (20-78): the LLT group 58.6 and NPT group 51.9 years. Women comprised 53% of the LLT group and 58% of the NPT. No significant differences in baseline lipid profiles, CK level, BMI, waist measurement, gender, cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or acetaminophen use, frequency of myalgias, SF-36 PF or mHAQ scores were observed between groups. On comparison of gender groups, we observed that men receiving LLT had significantly better SF- 36 PF (p = 0.037) than men on NPT. There were no differences in SF-36 PF or mHAQ scores between groups for females.

Conclusion: We found no adverse effects of LLT on physical functioning or quality of life. Indeed, men treated with LLT had significantly better SF-36 PF scores than men treated non-pharmacologically.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.25011/cim.v33i4.14229


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