Statin therapy is well established for prevention of cardiovascular disease. Statins may also reduce postoperative mortality and morbidity via a pleiotropic (non-lipid-lowering) effect. The authors conducted a meta-analysis to determine the influence of statin treatment on adverse postoperative outcomes in patients undergoing cardiac, vascular, or noncardiovascular surgery. Two independent authors abstracted data from 12 retrospective and 3 prospective trials (n = 223,010 patients). A meta-analysis was performed to evaluate the overall effect of preoperative statin therapy on postoperative outcomes. Preoperative statin therapy was associated with 38% and 59% reduction in the risk of mortality after cardiac (1.9% vs. 3.1%; P = 0.0001) and vascular (1.7% vs. 6.1%; P = 0.0001) surgery, respectively. When including noncardiac surgery, a 44% reduction in mortality (2.2% vs. 3.2%; P = 0.0001) was observed. Preoperative statin therapy may reduce postoperative mortality in patients undergoing surgical procedures. However, the statin associated effects on postoperative cardiovascular morbidity are too variable to draw any conclusion.