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Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 1997 Apr;11(2):409-14.

Ursodeoxycholic and tauro-ursodeoxycholic acids for the treatment of primary biliary cirrhosis: a pilot crossover study.

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1
Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medicine Ospedale San Paolo, University of Milan, Italy.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Results from animal studies and preliminary data from pilot studies in patients with primary biliary cirrhosis suggest that tauro-ursodeoxycholic acid has metabolic properties that may favour its long-term use as an alternative to ursodeoxycholic acid for patients with chronic cholestatic liver diseases. No direct comparison of tauro-ursodeoxycholic and ursodeoxycholic acids have yet been carried out in primary biliary cirrhosis.

METHODS:

The effects of ursodeoxycholic and tauro-ursodeoxycholic acids were compared in 23 patients with primary biliary cirrhosis according to a crossover design. Both drugs were administered at the daily dose of 500 mg. in a randomly assigned sequence for two 6-month periods separated by a 3-month wash-out period.

RESULTS:

Serum liver enzymes related to cholestasis and cytolysis consistently improved, as compared to baseline values, during the administration of both ursodeoxycholic and tauro-ursodeoxycholic acids, but no significant difference between these two bile acids was found. Both treatments were well tolerated and no patient complained of side effects.

CONCLUSION:

In the short-term, tauro-ursodeoxycholic acid appears to be safe and at least as effective as ursodeoxycholic acid for the treatment of primary biliary cirrhosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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