Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Circulation. 2003 Aug 19;108(7):839-43. Epub 2003 Jul 28.

Short-term statin therapy improves cardiac function and symptoms in patients with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy.

Author information

  • 1Cardiovascular Division, Department of Medicine, Saga University School of Medicine, 5-1-1 Nabeshima, Saga, 849-8501 Japan.

Erratum in

  • Circulation. 2003 Oct 28;108(17):2170.



Chronic heart failure is associated with inflammation and neurohormonal imbalance. The 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA (HMG-CoA) reductase inhibitors, or statins, exert anti-inflammatory and vascular protective effects. We hypothesized that short-term statin therapy may have beneficial effects in patients with nonischemic heart failure.


Sixty-three patients with symptomatic, nonischemic, dilated cardiomyopathy were randomly divided into 2 groups. One group received simvastatin (n=24), and the other group received placebo (n=27). The initial dose of simvastatin was 5 mg/d, which was increased to 10 mg/d after 4 weeks. After 14 weeks, patients receiving simvastatin exhibited a modest reduction in serum cholesterol level compared with patients receiving placebo (130+/-13 versus 148+/-18, P<0.05). Patients treated with simvastatin had a lower New York Heart Association functional class compared with patients receiving placebo (2.04+/-0.06 versus 2.32+/-0.05, P<0.01). This corresponded to improved left ventricular ejection fraction in the simvastatin group (34+/-3 to 41+/-4%, P<0.05) but not in the placebo group. Furthermore, plasma concentrations of tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-6, and brain natriuretic peptide were significantly lower in the simvastatin group compared with the placebo group.


Short-term statin therapy improves cardiac function, neurohormonal imbalance, and symptoms associated with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy. These findings suggest that statins may have therapeutic benefits in patients with heart failure irrespective of serum cholesterol levels or atherosclerotic heart disease.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk