Relation of Statin Use Prior to Admission to Severity and Recovery Among COVID-19 Inpatients

Am J Cardiol. 2020 Dec 1:136:149-155. doi: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2020.09.012. Epub 2020 Sep 16.


The impact of statins, angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) severity and recovery is important given their high prevalence of use among individuals at risk for severe COVID-19. We studied the association between use of statin/angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors/ARB in the month before hospital admission, with risk of severe outcome, and with time to severe outcome or disease recovery, among patients hospitalized for COVID-19. We performed a retrospective single-center study of all patients hospitalized at University of California San Diego Health between February 10, 2020 and June 17, 2020 (n = 170 hospitalized for COVID-19, n = 5,281 COVID-negative controls). Logistic regression and competing risks analyses were used to investigate progression to severe disease (death or intensive care unit admission), and time to discharge without severe disease. Severe disease occurred in 53% of COVID-positive inpatients. Median time from hospitalization to severe disease was 2 days; median time to recovery was 7 days. Statin use prior to admission was associated with reduced risk of severe COVID-19 (adjusted OR 0.29, 95%CI 0.11 to 0.71, p < 0.01) and faster time to recovery among those without severe disease (adjusted HR for recovery 2.69, 95%CI 1.36 to 5.33, p < 0.01). The association between statin use and severe disease was smaller in the COVID-negative cohort (p for interaction = 0.07). There was potential evidence of faster time to recovery with ARB use (adjusted HR 1.92, 95%CI 0.81 to 4.56). In conclusion, statin use during the 30 days prior to admission for COVID-19 was associated with a lower risk of developing severe COVID-19, and a faster time to recovery among patients without severe disease.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists / therapeutic use*
  • Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Betacoronavirus*
  • COVID-19
  • Coronavirus Infections / diagnosis
  • Coronavirus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Coronavirus Infections / therapy
  • Critical Care
  • Female
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pandemics
  • Pneumonia, Viral / diagnosis
  • Pneumonia, Viral / epidemiology*
  • Pneumonia, Viral / therapy
  • Recovery of Function
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Severity of Illness Index


  • Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists
  • Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors