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Central Texas Local News | kcentv.com

Baylor Scott & White research program includes Waco, Temple locations

The program will focus on learning if a drug used to lower cholesterol can help older adults stay healthy by preventing dementia, disability and heart disease.

TEMPLE, Texas — Baylor Scott & White Medical Centers in Central Texas are enrolling for a clinical trial to investigate whether a drug used to lower cholesterol can help prevent dementia, disability and heart disease in adults 75 and over.

The study, through the Baylor Scott & White Research Institute, aims to be one of the largest ever conducted in older adults, with more than 20,000 participants and 100 sites across the U.S., according to a release from the medical provider. The study will randomize participants without heart disease or dementia to receive either atorvastatin or a placebo, the release continued. 

Researchers will reportedly follow patients for up to five years and test their cognitive and physical abilities while monitoring them for events like heart attacks or strokes. Researchers will follow participants using electronic health records, Medicare data and with study visits over the telephone, the release said. The release stated the medication used in the study will be shipped directly to participants’ homes every three months.

“PREVENTABLE is a unique study for a number of reasons,” Dr. Catherine McNeal, an internal medicine physician at Baylor Scott & White Medical Center - Temple and principal investigator of the PREVENTABLE trial at Baylor Scott & White said. “Few studies have focused exclusively on individuals aged 75 or older. While statins have been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular events for some patients, PREVENTABLE will help us to learn whether they are helpful for older adults without heart disease.”

In addition to learning whether statins can prolong health in older adults, the PREVENTABLE study may help clarify which older adults should not be taking statins, the release said. About one in three people in the U.S. over the age of 75 without heart disease are taking statins, per the release. 

PREVENTABLE is funded by the National Institute of Aging and the National Heart, Lung, & Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health under award number U19AG065188. To learn more about PREVENTABLE, visit the research site to learn more.

To find out who can take part in the study, or for more information, contact Baylor Scott & White Research Institute at 888-507-3732.