From the Editor
Statins can help prevent MIs in people with high cholesterol. Can they also prevent psychiatric admissions for those with schizophrenia?
The question may seem odd, but there is evidence that statins can reduce symptoms in people with schizophrenia – though the evidence is light. That may not be as surprising as it seems: statins are anti-inflammatories, and a growing literature suggests neuro-inflammation is involved in major mental illness.
So should our patients receive medications like statins? The concept of repurposing common medications has gained attention.
This week, we look at a paper just published in JAMA Psychiatry. In their study, University College London’s Joseph F. Hayes and his co-authors consider the effect of statins, calcium channel blockers, and biguanides (such as metformin). Spoiler alert: they find that these medications reduce psychiatric hospital admissions and self-harm in people with serious mental illness.
In this Reading, we review the new paper about the not-so-new meds. We also take a quick look at another paper (on ketamine).