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Increased levels of blood fats such as cholesterol and triglycerides are risk factors for arteriosclerosis and thus for cardio-vascular diseases. Statins lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels and decrease the risk for stroke and cardiac infarction. Some genetic variants decrease the ability of the body to break down statins owing to reduced uptake by the liver. Increased serum statin levels can result in adverse effects including muscle ache, myopathy, and – in extreme cases – palsies and degeneration of skeletal muscle (rhabdomyolysis).

Results of analyses of this box inform whether the statin you are taking is sufficiently degraded. If not, dose adjustments or alternative drugs need to be considered in order to avoid adverse effects. Thus PGS.statins is useful for persons currently taking statins or planning to do so in future.