Many add-on cholesterol drugs are ineffective, research finds

Niaspan, Lovaza, Zetia and Vytorin are often prescribed along with a statin to further reduce patients' risk of stroke or heart attack, but the drugs have not proven to do so, and new research finds prescription niacin may increase bleeding, infection and diabetes risks. "So at least $4.5 billion was spent on drugs with uncertain benefit and known risks," said Dr. James Stein of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.

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