Nutraceuticals alone or with ezetimibe aid in dyslipidemia
Giuseppe Marazzi, M.D., Ph.D., from the Istituto di Ricerca a Carattere Scientifico San Raffaele Pisana in Rome, and colleagues conducted a randomized, prospective study comparing the safety and efficacy of a combination of nutraceuticals (red yeast rice, policosanol, berberine, folic acid, coenzyme Q10, and astaxanthin) and ezetimibe for three months. Patients who did not achieve their therapeutic target could add the alternative treatment for an additional 12 months. The authors enrolled 100 patients who were dyslipidemic with ischemic heart disease treated with percutaneous coronary intervention (50 to nutraceuticals and 50 to ezetimibe).
The researchers found that 14 patients in the nutraceutical group and none in the ezetimibe group achieved their therapeutic target (low-density lipoprotein cholesterol <100 mg/dL) after three months. The therapeutic goal was reached by 72.8 percent of the combined therapy group and by 100 percent of the nutraceutical group at one-year follow-up. There were no reports of important undesirable effects.
"Nutraceuticals alone or in combination with ezetimibe are well tolerated and improve the lipid profile in statin-intolerant patients with coronary heart disease," the authors write. "Further studies are needed to assess long-term effects of nutraceuticals on mortality."
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