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Mayo Clin Proc. 2004 May;79(5):620-9.

Efficacy and safety of ezetimibe coadministered with simvastatin in patients with primary hypercholesterolemia: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

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  • 1Lipid Research Clinic, Washington University, St Louis, MO 63110-1093, USA.



To compare the efficacy and safety of 10 mg of ezetimibe coadministered with simvastatin with the safety and efficacy of simvastatin monotherapy for patients with hypercholesterolemia.


This multicenter double-blind, placebo-controlled, factorial study enrolled 887 patients with hypercholesterolemia (low-density lipoprotein cholesterol [LDL-C], 145-250 mg/dL; triglycerides, < or = 350 mg/dL). Patients were randomized to 1 of 10 treatments--placebo, ezetimibe at 10 mg/d, simvastatin at 10, 20, 40, or 80 mg/d, or simvastatin at 10, 20, 40, or 80 mg/d plus ezetimibe at 10 mg/d for 12 weeks. The study began March 13, 2001, and ended January 8, 2002. The primary efficacy end point was the mean percent change in LDL-C levels from baseline to study end point (last available postbaseline LDL-C measurement) for the pooled ezetimibe/simvastatin group vs the pooled simvastatin monotherapy group.


Coadministration of ezetimibe/simvastatin was significantly (P<.001) more effective than simvastatin alone in reducing LDL-C levels for the pooled ezetimibe/simvastatin vs pooled simvastatin analysis and at each specific dose comparison. The decrease in LDL-C levels with coadministration of ezetimibe and the lowest dose of simvastatin, 10 mg, was similar to the decrease with the maximum dose of simvastatin, 80 mg. A significantly (P<.001) greater proportion of patients in the ezetimibe/simvastatin group achieved target LDL-C levels compared with those in the monotherapy group. Treatment with ezetimibe/simvastatin also led to greater reductions in total cholesterol, triglyceride, non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and apolipoprotein B levels compared with simvastatin alone; both treatments increased high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels similarly. The safety and tolerability profiles for the ezetimibe/simvastatin and monotherapy groups were similar.


Through dual inhibition of cholesterol absorption and synthesis, coadministration of ezetimibe/simvastatin offers a highly efficacious and well-tolerated lipid-lowering strategy for treating patients with primary hypercholesterolemia.

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