Atorvastatin monotherapy vs. combination therapy in the management of patients with combined hyperlipidemia

Inbal Avisar, J. Gerald Brook, Efrat Wolfovitz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Mixed hyperlipidemia is a common disorder characterized by elevated VLDL and LDL levels. Patients with this syndrome usually are in need of combination therapy, comprising a fibric acid derivate with a statin drug in order to achieve LDL and triglyceride target values. Atorvastatin is a hydroxymethylglutaryl coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase inhibitor demonstrated to be effective in reducing both cholesterol (CHOL) and triglyceride (TG) levels in humans. We examined the efficacy of atorvastatin as monotherapy in achieving a better or the same lipid profile in patients with mixed hyperlipidemia treated with combination therapy. Design: We compared atorvastatin with a combination of a fibric acid derivate and a statin drug (other than atorvastatin) in a 24-week, prospective randomized, open-label study of 27 patients with mixed hyperlipidemia. Methods: All 27 patients had been treated with statin-fibrate therapy in different regimens for at least a year. Atorvastatin at a daily dose of 20 mg was substituted for statin-fibrate therapy. Lipid and safety profiles were assessed. Results: Atorvastatin significantly reduced total cholesterol, LDL-C, and HDL-C compared to statin-fibrate therapy. In contrast, TG and glucose levels were significantly elevated with atorvastatin. Target LDL-C and TG was achieved in 10 patients with the single therapy of atorvastatin vs. 6 patients under statin-fibrate. In 16 patients, atorvastatin was at least as effective as, or better than, the combination therapy, and was recommended for continuation of treatment. Conclusion: Atorvastatin is an adequate monotherapy for many mixed hyperlipidemia patients. We recommend atorvastatin be considered for every patient suffering from mixed hyperlipidemia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-208
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Internal Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Atorvastatin
  • Mixed hyperlipidemia
  • Statin-fibrate combinations


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