Statin therapy after acute myocardial infarction: are we adequately treating high-risk patients?

Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2002 Mar;4(2):99-106. doi: 10.1007/s11883-002-0032-4.


After acute myocardial infarction, patients remain at high risk for recurrent cardiovascular events and mortality. Despite the compelling scientific and clinical trial evidence that lipid-lowering medications reduce mortality in patients after acute myocardial infarction, this life-saving therapy continues to be underutilized. A number of studies in a variety of clinical settings have documented that a significant proportion of patients after myocardial infarction are not receiving treatment with lipid-lowering medications when guided by conventional care. It has recently been demonstrated that implementation of a hospital-based system for initiation of statins prior to hospital discharge results in a marked increase in treatment rates, improved long-term patient compliance, more patients reaching low-density lipoprotein levels of less than 100 mg/dL, and improved clinical outcomes. Adopting in-hospital initiation of lipid-lowering medications as the standard of care for patients hospitalized with acute myocardial infarction could dramatically improve treatment rates and thus substantially reduce the risk of future coronary events and prolong life in the large number of patients hospitalized each year.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cardiovascular Diseases / blood
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Humans
  • Hypolipidemic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Myocardial Infarction / blood
  • Myocardial Infarction / complications*
  • Myocardial Infarction / drug therapy
  • Recurrence
  • Risk Factors


  • Hypolipidemic Agents