system stats (9205) - can they go stale?

Hi all
I have a query on a simple table of a few thousand rows that suddenly takes 
minutes instead of < 1 sec; and it is only slow when called from a procedure. 
One suspicion is that the system stats are stale; I know queries on this DB 
used to drag without the system stats.
Is there any way to tell if the optimizer has suddenly decided that it doesnt 
like the contents of sys.aux_stat$ any more?

Rgds
Mark

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