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Scand J Urol Nephrol. 2005;39(6):503-10.

Safety and efficacy of atorvastatin in patients with severe renal dysfunction.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Divisions of Nephrology, Umeå Hospital, Umeå, Sweden.



To investigate the efficacy and safety of a daily dose of 10 mg of atorvastatin in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) stages 4 and 5 and a glomerular filtration rate of <30 ml/min.


This was an open, prospective, randomized study. A total of 143 patients were included: 73 were controls and 70 were prescribed 10 mg/day of atorvastatin. As efficacy variables, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and triglyceride levels were determined at the start of the study and at 1, 3, 6, 12, 18, 24, 30 and 36 months.


The follow-up period was a mean of 20+/-14.4 months (range 1-36 months) for those on atorvastatin versus 22+/-12.7 months (range 0.5-36 months) for the controls. Compared with baseline values, patients treated with atorvastatin had significantly lower concentrations of total cholesterol at Month 36 (5.8 vs 4.4 mmol/l; -23%; p<0.001), of LDL cholesterol at Month 36 (3.6 vs 2.2 mmol/l; -35%; p<0.001) and of triglycerides at Months 24 (2.5 vs 1.9 mmol/l) and 36 (2.5 vs 1.8 mmol/l). The controls had significantly reduced levels of total cholesterol at Month 36 (p<0.21) and of LDL cholesterol at Months 30 and 36. Compared with the controls, the atorvastatin group had lower levels of total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol at Months 1-30. Fifteen patients (21%) stopped taking their medication as they could not tolerate the side-effects, the most frequent complaints being gastrointestinal discomfort and headache.


Although the medication caused no severe adverse events, we recommend caution when using atorvastatin for severe CKD patients until further evidence of its safety and efficacy is verified.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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