Reduction of Myocardial Infarction and All-Cause Mortality Associated to Statins in Patients Without Obstructive CAD

Kristian A Øvrehus, Axel Diederichsen, Erik L Grove, Flemming H Steffensen, Martin B Mortensen, Jesper M Jensen, Hans Mickley, Lene H Nielsen, Martin Busk, Niels Peter R Sand, Jess Lambrechtsen, Anders H Riis, Ina Trolle Andersen, Hans E Bøtker, Bjarne L Nørgaard

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


OBJECTIVE: The aim of this work was to evaluate the prognostic impact of statin therapy in symptomatic patients without obstructive CAD.

BACKGROUND: Information on the prognostic impact of post-coronary computed tomographic angiography (CTA) statin use in patients with no or nonobstructive coronary artery disease (CAD) is sparse.

METHODS: Patients undergoing CTA with suspected CAD in western Denmark from 2008 to 2017 with <50% coronary stenoses were identified. Information on post-CTA use of statin therapy and cardiovascular events were obtained from national registries.

RESULTS: The study included 33,552 patients, median aged 56 years, 58% female, with no (n = 19,669) or nonobstructive (n = 13,883) CAD and a median follow-up of 3.5 years. The absolute risk of the combined end point of myocardial infarction (MI) or all-cause mortality was directly associated with the CAD burden with an event rate/1,000 patient-years of 4.13 (95% CI: 3.69-4.61) in no, 7.74 (95% CI: 6.88-8.71) in mild (coronary artery calcium score [CACS] 0-99), 13.72 (95% CI: 11.61-16.23) in moderate (CACS 100-399), and 32.47 (95% CI: 26.25-40.16) in severe (CACS ≥400) nonobstructive CAD. Statin therapy was associated with a multivariable adjusted HR for MI and death of 0.52 (95% CI: 0.36-0.75) in no, 0.44 (95% CI: 0.32-0.62) in mild, 0.51 (95% CI: 0.34-0.75) in moderate, and 0.52 (95% CI: 0.32-0.86) in severe nonobstructive CAD. The estimated numbers needed to treat to prevent the primary end point were 92 (95% CI: 61-182) in no, 36 (95% CI: 26-58) in mild, 24 (95% CI: 15-61) in moderate, and 13 (95% CI: 7-86) in severe nonobstructive CAD. Residual confounding may persist, but not to an extent explaining all of the observed risk reduction associated with statin treatment.

CONCLUSIONS: The risk of MI and all-cause mortality in patients without obstructive CAD is directly associated with the CAD burden. Statin therapy is associated with a reduction of MI and all-cause death across the spectrum of CAD, however, the absolute benefit of treatment is directionally proportional with the CAD burden.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJ A C C: Cardiovascular Imaging
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 10. Jul 2021

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Copyright © 2021. Published by Elsevier Inc.


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