|A Case of Statin Pain
Dr. Keli Samuelson
Joey is a 36-year-old construction worker who complained of fatigue along with joint and muscle pain. He reports a gradual increase in these symptoms over the last year or so. He does construction, so his job is very physical. He is concerned that the degree of his symptoms will get worse and have more of an impact on his work.
In reviewing his history for clues to the cause of these symptoms, I uncovered the following;
His sleep is interrupted almost every night with body pain.
He consumes almost no water and drinks significant coffee throughout the day.
At home he has a healthy diet because his wife is cooking but during the day, he will often eat takeout.
He goes out with friends a few nights a week for drinks.
He has a history of high cholesterol and has been on Statins for the last few years.
In our initial evaluation I also ordered an extensive blood profile. We found that all his other cardiac markers were perfect, but he did have a number of nutritional deficiencies.
Our initial treatment plan included;
Limiting coffee to one cup in the am.
Increasing water consumption
Decreasing/elimination of alcohol consumption.
Taking leftovers from dinner for lunch instead of fast food for lunch.
We discussed the role that Statins can play by reviewing the most common side effects of fatigue, muscle and joint pain. He was reluctant to remove them from his routine.
After a few weeks of the changes above Joey did notice some improvement in all his symptoms but it was not nearly enough to make a critical difference. After discussing taking a medication break with his prescribing doctor, he agreed to take a break from his medication. Within a week his symptoms were dramatically reduced. He was shocked and vowed to never go back on them.
Statins can deplete nutrients like CoQ10 and magnesium from our system and this depletion can cause muscle fatigue and pain. If you are taking statins, you should be also taking a supplement of CoQ10 and Magnesium.
For Joey we reviewed the naturopathic treatment options for treating his cholesterol and initiated a plan that he was happy with. His follow up blood tests revealed a drop of his Total and LDL cholesterol numbers, bringing them both into a normal range.
There are natural options for lowering cholesterol that work well for some people.
He now says “I jump out of bed in the morning and have no muscle or joint pain.”