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Circulation. 2000 Jul 4;102(1):21-7.

Secondary prevention by raising HDL cholesterol and reducing triglycerides in patients with coronary artery disease.

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Israeli Society for Prevention of Heart Attacks, Tel-Hashomer, Israel.



Coronary heart disease patients with low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) levels, high triglyceride levels, or both are at an increased risk of cardiovascular events, but the clinical impact of raising HDL-C or decreasing triglycerides remains to be confirmed.


In a double-blind trial, 3090 patients with a previous myocardial infarction or stable angina, total cholesterol of 180 to 250 mg/dL, HDL-C < or =45 mg/dL, triglycerides < or =300 mg/dL, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol < or =180 mg/dL were randomized to receive either 400 mg of bezafibrate per day or a placebo; they were followed for a mean of 6.2 years. The primary end point was fatal or nonfatal myocardial infarction or sudden death. Bezafibrate increased HDL-C by 18% and reduced triglycerides by 21%. The frequency of the primary end point was 13. 6% on bezafibrate versus 15.0% on placebo (P=0.26). After 6.2 years, the reduction in the cumulative probability of the primary end point was 7.3%, (P=0.24). In a post hoc analysis in the subgroup with high baseline triglycerides (> or =200 mg/dL), the reduction in the cumulative probability of the primary end point by bezafibrate was 39.5% (P=0.02). Total and noncardiac mortality rates were similar, and adverse events and cancer were equally distributed.


Bezafibrate was safe and effective in elevating HDL-C levels and lowering triglycerides. An overall trend in a reduction of the incidence of primary end points was observed. The reduction in the primary end point in patients with high baseline triglycerides (> or =200 mg/dL) requires further confirmation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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