Ezetimibe plus simvastatin for the treatment of hypercholesterolemia.
Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2015 Apr 28;:1-8
Authors: Gryn SE, Hegele RA
INTRODUCTION: Cardiovascular disease is a major cause of death, and hypercholesterolemia is a major risk factor. Statins, with simvastatin among the most widely used, have ample evidence demonstrating prevention of cardiovascular events and mortality. Ezetimibe is effective at improving serum lipids in combination with statins or alone, but its role has been controversial. Areas covered: Here, we provide an overview of the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of each component of the combination, as well as pharmacogenetic contributors. Regarding clinical efficacy, our focus will be on the post-marketing clinical trials of ezetimibe-simvastatin combination therapy. We broach the controversy around the role of ezetimibe, particularly in light of the results of the IMProved Reduction of Outcomes: Vytorin Efficacy International Trial (IMPROVE-IT). Expert opinion: Ezetimibe in combination with simvastatin or other statins provides an excellent means of incremental lipid-lowering effect, although the clinical benefit has been uncertain. IMPROVE-IT is the first to demonstrate incremental cardiovascular risk reduction with the addition of ezetimibe to simvastatin. What the literature lacks is evidence around the common use of ezetimibe as monotherapy or add-on therapy to lower doses of statins in patients who fail to achieve adequate lipid lowering or do not tolerate high-dose statins.
PMID: 25920750 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]