The Association Between the Use of Statins and Clinical Outcomes in Patients with COVID-19: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis

Chia Siang Kow, Syed Shahzad Hasan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: Previously, we have reported potential clinical benefits with the use of statins in patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in a meta-analysis, where there was a significantly reduced hazard for a fatal or severe course of illness with the use of statins, but the meta-analysis was limited by the small number of studies included, with small heterogeneity among studies, due to the unavailability of more studies at the point of literature search. We aimed to perform an updated systematic review and meta-analysis to summarize the existing evidence on the effect of statins on the clinical outcomes of patients with COVID-19. Methods: Electronic databases, including PubMed, Google Scholar, and Scopus, and preprint servers were searched (last updated June 3, 2021) to identify studies investigating the association between the use of statins in patients with COVID-19 and the development of severe disease and/or mortality. Random-effects model meta-analyses were performed to estimate the pooled odds ratio (OR) or hazard ratio (HR) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). The outcomes of interest were (1) all-cause mortality and (2) a composite endpoint of severe illness of COVID-19. Results: Upon systematic literature search, we identified 35 studies, of which 32 studies reported the outcome of all-cause mortality and 15 studies reported the composite endpoint of severe COVID-19 illness between statin users versus non-statin users with COVID-19. Our meta-analysis revealed that the use of statins was associated with a significantly lower risks of all-cause mortality (HR = 0.70, 95% CI 0.58–0.84, n = 21,127, and OR = 0.63, 95% CI 0.51–0.79, n = 115,097) and the composite endpoint of severe illness (OR = 0.80, 95% CI 0.73–0.88, n = 10,081) in patients with COVID-19, compared to non-use of statins, at the current sample size. Conclusion: Statin use is associated with a better prognosis in patients with COVID-19. Our findings provide a rationale to investigate the use of statins among patients with COVID-19 in large scale clinical trials.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-181
Number of pages15
JournalAmerican Journal of Cardiovascular Drugs
Issue number2
Early online date3 Aug 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2022


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