Atorvastatin for patients with cirrhosis. A randomized, placebo-controlled trial

Link to article at PubMed

Hepatol Commun. 2023 Dec 1;7(12):e0332. doi: 10.1097/HC9.0000000000000332. eCollection 2023 Dec 1.


BACKGROUND: Patients with cirrhosis and portal hypertension face a high risk of complications. Besides their anti-inflammatory and antifibrotic effects, statins may reduce portal pressure and thus the risk of complications and mortality. We aimed to investigate the effects of atorvastatin on hospital admissions, mortality, inflammation, and lipidomics in cirrhosis with portal hypertension.

METHODS: We performed a double-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial among patients with cirrhosis and portal hypertension. Atorvastatin (10-20 mg/d) was administered for 6 months. We measured splanchnic hemodynamics, analyzed inflammatory markers, and performed lipidomics at baseline and after 6 months.

RESULTS: Seventy-eight patients were randomized, with 38 patients allocated to atorvastatin and 40 patients to placebo. Fifty-nine patients completed 6 months of intervention. Comparisons between changes in each group were calculated. Liver-related complications and mortality were similar between the groups. The HVPG and Model for End-stage Liver Disease score did not change between groups (p=0.95 and 0.87, respectively). Atorvastatin decreased 3 of 42 inflammatory markers, CD62-L-selectin, matrix metalloproteinases-2, and TNF-α (p-values: 0.005, 0.011, and 0.023, respectively), while lipidomics was not significantly changed.

CONCLUSIONS: In patients with cirrhosis, atorvastatin was safe to use, but did not reduce mortality, the risk of liver-related complications, or the HVPG. Atorvastatin induced minor anti-inflammatory effects and minor effects on lipids during a 6-month treatment period.

PMID:38051553 | PMC:PMC10697620 | DOI:10.1097/HC9.0000000000000332

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