Pooled analysis confirms vitamin E as a treatment for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis
Results revealed today at The International Liver Congress 2015 show that vitamin E (d-alpha-tocopherol) is an effective treatment for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). NASH occurs when the liver becomes inflamed due to the accumulation of fat. Over time, persistent inflammation can lead to the formation of fibrous scar tissue in the liver and around its blood vessels, which can eventually cause cirrhosis.
A pooled analysis of data from two randomised trials comparing vitamin E versus placebo, and the placebo group from another trial comparing vitamin E use versus non-use, demonstrates that the efficacy of vitamin E is comparable to other treatments for NASH, including pioglitazone, metformin and obeticholic acid. In addition, treatment with vitamin E is associated with significant improvements in both NASH histology (45% vs 22% in those not treated with vitamin E) and resolution of disease (38% vs 20% in those not treated with vitamin E). There was no increase in cardiovascular events and no adverse lipid profiles were observed with vitamin E treatment.
A total of 347 patients (155 treated with vitamin E, 192 not treated with vitamin E) were included in the analysis which compared data from three clinical trials that investigated the efficacy and safety of vitamin E as a treatment for NASH: the PIVENS, TONIC and FLINT trials. Histologic improvement was defined as ? 2 point improvement in NAS with no worsening of fibrosis, and NASH resolution measured effectiveness.
The study supports the use of vitamin E as a treatment for NASH.