Allery Treatment News

Preoperative Use of Statins May Protect Against Postoperative Atrial Fibrillation

June 21, 2017

A new study shows that statin use prior to major thoracic surgery may help to reduce the incidence of atrial fibrillation (AF), independent of c-reactive protein (CRP) levels.

Elevated CRP levels, a marker of inflammation in the body, have been shown in patients with AF unrelated to surgery and statins are known to lower CRP.

To determine whether elevated CRP predisposes patients to postoperative AF and whether statin use is associated with reduced AF incidence, researchers from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, NY, studied the affects of statin use on 131 patients age 73 6 years who had major lung or esophageal resection. Of the patients, 38 were treated with statins prior to surgery.

AF occurred in 29 percent of patients a median of three days after surgery. Despite a significant increase in postoperative CRP levels for all patients, AF occurred in 11 percent of patients who used statins, compared to 29 percent in those who did not use statins. Researchers conclude that thoracic surgery patients with elevated CRP levels are not predisposed to AF and that statin use is associated with a significant reduction in AF.

The study appears in the November issue of CHEST, the peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Chest Physicians.

News briefs from the journal CHEST, November 2005

Jennifer Stawarz
American College of Chest Physicians