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J Hepatol. 2015 Jan;62(1):18-23. doi: 10.1016/j.jhep.2014.08.013. Epub 2014 Aug 15.

Statin use is associated with a reduced risk of fibrosis progression in chronic hepatitis C.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA, USA; Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
2
Liver Center, Gastrointestinal Division, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA; Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
3
Biostatistics Center, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA; Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
4
Liver Center, Gastrointestinal Division, Department of Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA; Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA. Electronic address: rtchung@partners.org.

Abstract

BACKGROUND & AIMS:

Therapies that slow fibrosis progression in chronic liver disease are needed. Animal models have demonstrated that statins prevent the progression of hepatic fibrosis, but human data is lacking so far. We evaluated the association between statins and fibrosis progression in the HALT-C trial cohort.

METHODS:

Subjects with chronic hepatitis C (CHC) and advanced hepatic fibrosis underwent serial liver biopsies over 3.5 years. The primary outcome was a ⩾ 2-point increase in the Ishak fibrosis score on at least one of two serial biopsies. We used complementary log-log regression analysis to assess the association between statins and fibrosis progression among subjects without baseline cirrhosis.

RESULTS:

Fibrosis progression occurred in 3/29 (10%) statin users and 145/514 (29%) non-users. The unadjusted hazard ratio (HR) for fibrosis progression among statin users compared to non-users was 0.32 (95% CI 0.10-0.99). This association remained significant after adjusting for established predictors of histological outcome, including body mass index, platelets and hepatic steatosis (adjusted HR 0.31; 95% CI 0.10-0.97). The mean change in Ishak fibrosis score over the 3.5 year study period was -0.34 (SE 0.18) for statin users compared to +0.42 (SE 0.07) for non-users (p = 0.006, after adjustment for baseline fibrosis score).

CONCLUSIONS:

Statin use is associated with a reduced risk of fibrosis progression in advanced CHC. Our findings suggest a potential role for statins in preventing liver disease progression.

KEYWORDS:

Cirrhosis; Hepatitis C virus; Lipid lowering agent

PMID:
25135867
PMCID:
PMC4272642
DOI:
10.1016/j.jhep.2014.08.013
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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