There are more than 1 million students in the New York City public school system, and more than 22% of them were chronically absent from the classroom even before the pandemic. That's not good for their future.
But even more adults — around 50% — fail to show up for their life-saving daily dose of a statin. That really threatens their future.
Fortunately, there are new cholesterol-fighting medications that even your doctor might not be aware of, according to a new JAMA Insights Clinical Update.
If you're not taking your prescribed statin, or your (bad) LDL cholesterol level is too high, ask about trying one of the following drugs on its own or along with a statin. Most are covered by insurance.
• PSCK-9 inhibitors. A monoclonal antibody administered by injection every two to four weeks, this medication reduces LDL by 50% to 60% and is well-tolerated. Check to see if your insurance covers it.
• Ezetimibe. This inexpensive generic drug cuts intestinal absorption of cholesterol and reduces LDL levels by 10% to 20%. It’s good in combination with a statin.
• Bempedoic acid. This medication lowers LDL by about 20%, with few side effects. It's not yet known how much it reduces the risk of atherosclerotic-related cardiovascular disease; check for price and insurance coverage.
• Icosapent ethyl. When this omega-3 fatty acid is added to statin therapy for patients with high triglyceride levels, it can reduce atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease risk by 25%. But it has a highly variable out-of-pocket cost.