Effects of ezetimibe, a new cholesterol absorption inhibitor, on plasma lipids in patients with primary hypercholesterolemia

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Aims: This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel-group study evaluated the safety and efficacy of ezetimibe 10 mg/day in patients with primary hypercholesterolemia. Methods and results: Following dietary stabilization, a 2-12-week washout period, and a 4-week, single-blind, placebo lead-in period, 827 patients with baseline low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) ≥3.36 mmol/l (130 mg/dl) to ≤6.47 mmol/l (250 mg/dl) and triglycerides ≤3.95 mmol/l (350 mg/dl) were randomized 3:1 to receive ezetimibe 10 mg or placebo orally once daily in the morning for 12 weeks. The primary efficacy endpoint was percentage reduction in direct plasma LDL-C. Ezetimibe reduced direct LDL-C by a mean of 17.7% from baseline to endpoint, compared with an increase of 0.8% with placebo (P<0.01). Response to ezetimibe was generally consistent across all subgroups analyzed. Ezetimibe also significantly improved levels of plasma total cholesterol, apolipoprotein B, high-density lipoprotein2-cholesterol and lipoprotein(a), and elicited a trend toward lower triglyceride levels. Ezetimibe did not alter the serum concentrations of lipid-soluble vitamins or significantly affect baseline or stimulated cortisol production. Ezetimibe was well tolerated, with a safety profile similar to that of placebo. Conclusions: Ezetimibe, which significantly reduces LDL-C and favorably affects other lipid variables, may provide a well tolerated and effective new option for lipid management in the future. © 2003 The European Society of Cardiology. Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.




Knopp, R. H., Gitter, H., Truitt, T., Bays, H., Manion, C. V., Lipka, L. J., … Veltri, E. P. (2003). Effects of ezetimibe, a new cholesterol absorption inhibitor, on plasma lipids in patients with primary hypercholesterolemia. European Heart Journal, 24(8), 729–741. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0195-668X(02)00807-2

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