For some time now, people who have high cholesterol have been treated with a special class of cholesterol lowering medications known as statins.
These medications are known to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.
They are believed to work by reducing inflammation of a particular type that has been linked to heart problems.
Turns out, this is good news for asthma sufferers as well. When asthma patients are on statin medications, they have fewer trips to the emergency room and fewer hospitalizations. There are a variety of asthma treatments, but controlling the disease can be difficult.
About 20 million Americans suffer from asthma, and half a million end up in the hospital because of asthma each year.
Studies show that statins not only reduce the inflammation that can cause heart problems, but it also reduces the inflammation that can trigger the spasms in the breathing passages that are a hallmark of asthma.
While it is too soon to know if prescribing statin medications just for asthma control is appropriate, if you have asthma and high cholesterol, that statin medication your doctor has already prescribed may be helping you even more than you realized.