mental health

A large study led by University College London (UCL) has found that statins and other medications have significant benefit in patients with some form of mental illness.

The study, involving 142,691 patients published in JAMA Psychiatry ultimately showed that patients taking statins had lower rates of psychiatric hospitalisation as well as reduced self-harm rates in patients with bipolar disorder.

The stark differences between patients taking physical health drugs such as those for cholesterol and blood pressure and those not taking any medication could be seen by a 40% reduction in self-harm and over 30% reduction for those on diabetes drugs.

Lead author, Dr. Joseph Hayes at UCL, said: “Serious mental illnesses, including bipolar disorder, are associated with high levels of morbidity and are challenging to treat.

“Many widely used drugs, such as statins, have long been identified as having the potential for repurposing to benefit these disorders.”