In a recent paper published by the American Thoracic Society (October 2007), the use of statins appears to slow down the rate in which lung function declines in the senior population. More surprisingly, the decline decrease also is evident in smokers.
The researchers postulate that statins’ known anti-inflammatory properties (along with antioxidant properties) cause this effect.
Dr. Joel Schwartz, the lead researcher on the study, and a professor of environmental epidemiology at Harvard School of Public health, points out that his study shows the importance of "a possibility of reducing the rate of decline."
The primary indication for prescription of statins such as Lipitor and Zocor is for the treatment of high cholesterol.
Source: American Thoracic Society