Efficacy of atorvastatin when not administered daily.
Arq Bras Cardiol. 2007 Nov;89(5):294-300, 325-32
Authors: Ghattas AE, Pimenta J
BACKGROUND: Statins are widely used because they reduce cardiac events. Although they are indicated for daily use, some doctorsgive prescriptions for every other day, mainly with the purpose of reducing costs. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy of atorvastatin, when not administered everyday, on LDL-cholesterol (LDL-C) levels, and also to evaluate cost reduction. METHODS: A total of 100 patients with hypercholesterolemia in primary (PP) and secondary prevention (SP) were assessed. After a 12-week diet period, atorvastatin was initiated at a dose of 10 mg per day. After six weeks, LDL-C was determined, and if the levels were <80 or <104 mg/dL for SP and PP, respectively, two atorvastatin doses were subtracted per week. If LDL-C remained <80 or <104 mg/dL, a further reduction to three times a week was allowed, and the last determination was performed after six more weeks. The percentage variation in costs was the parameter to evaluate the saving. RESULTS: In 47 out of the 52 patients of this group, a reduction by 32% in LDL-C was observed, and daily atorvastatin was maintained. Forty one patients remained throughout the study and had their weekly dosage reduced. In 25 patients the medication was administered three times a week, and in 16, five times a week, with reductions of 42.4% and 46.1% in LDL-C, respectively. As regards costs, one of the groups had their monthly expense reduced from R$ 106.65 to R$ 74.65, and the other group from R$ 106.65 to R$ 53.33. CONCLUSION: The results suggest that atorvastatin may be administered on a non-daily basis. A cost reduction between 30% and 50% was also observed.
PMID: 18066453 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]