Hope for Unhealthy Hearts

A seminal Scandinavian study shows that powerful new drug treatments are safe and really do save lives

Doctors have long known about the link between heart disease, America's No. 1 killer, and high levels of cholesterol in the blood. Yet physicians have been reluctant to treat patients with drugs that lower cholesterol. Not only are the medications expensive (as much as $1,000 a year), but they also have been dogged by an inexplicable anomaly: in studies of patients who take them, declines in fatal heart attacks have been offset by a mysterious rise in deaths from other causes. As attractive as the cholesterol-reducing pills might seem, nobody had yet proved that they actually save lives.

Until now. Last...

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