Statin use in patients with acute pancreatitis and symptomatic gallstone disease

Pancreas. 2014 May;43(4):638-41. doi: 10.1097/MPA.0000000000000068.


Objective: The long-term use of statins may be associated with a decreased risk for gallstones and biliary-induced acute pancreatitis (AP). Our aim was to study the relationship of statin use and outcome of AP.

Methods: We investigated the records of 461 consecutive patients with AP and 1140 patients with symptomatic gallstones during 2008 to 2010. The use of lipid-lowering drugs, patient's characteristics, and outcome of patients were recorded. All known risk factors for AP and particularly statin use in idiopathic AP were analyzed.

Results: Statin use was comparable between the patients with AP (22%) and patients with cholelithiasis (24%). The frequencies of surgical treatment, duration of hospital stay, or mortality were not different between the statin users compared with the nonusers. Idiopathic AP was more often associated with the use of statins than alcohol- or gallstone-induced AP (44% vs 30% vs 13%, P < 0.002). The etiology of AP was alcohol in 56% of the patients, gallstones in 28% of the patients, and unknown (idiopathic) or miscellaneous in 16% of the patients.

Conclusions: No beneficial effect of statins was observed in mortality or other outcome parameters of patients with AP. Statin use was more frequent in patients with idiopathic AP than in patients with biliary- or alcohol-induced AP.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Dyslipidemias / diagnosis
  • Dyslipidemias / drug therapy*
  • Dyslipidemias / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Finland
  • Gallstones / diagnosis
  • Gallstones / epidemiology*
  • Gallstones / mortality
  • Gallstones / surgery
  • Humans
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / adverse effects
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pancreatitis / diagnosis
  • Pancreatitis / epidemiology*
  • Pancreatitis / mortality
  • Pancreatitis / surgery
  • Risk Assessment
  • Risk Factors
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors