Short-term safety and efficacy of low-dose simvastatin in elderly patients with hypertensive hypercholesterolemia and fasting hyperinsulinemia

Paul Chan, Tsuei Yuen Huang, Brian Tomlinson, Clarita Lee, Ying Shiung Lee

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To evaluate the short-term safety and efficacy of low-dose (10 mg) simvastatin in hypercholesterolemic, hypertensive elderly Chinese patients receiving antihypertensive treatment, a randomized, double-blind, placebo- controlled, 3-month trial was conducted. The patients had a total plasma cholesterol level of at least 250 mg/dL and had been, for at least 3 months, consuming a standard lipid-lowering diet (American Heart Association Step 1 Diet). Elderly hypertensive patients (n = 76) were randomized to receive treatment with either placebo (n = 38) or simvastatin (n = 38). The dosage consisted of 10 mg simvastatin daily during the 3-month trial. During that period, in the simvastatin group, plasma levels of total cholesterol and low- density lipoprotein cholesterol decreased significantly (27% and 33%, respectively) compared with those levels in plasma in the placebo group. The plasma levels of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol increased (7%), whereas triglyceride levels slightly decreased (8%). There were no serious side effects, and simvastatin was generally well tolerated. Fasting hyperinsulinemia also improved (-21%) after 3 months of simvastatin therapy. Results of this study confirmed that a low dose (10 mg) of simvastatin daily is a safe and effective method of reducing plasma levels of total and low- density lipoprotein cholesterol in hypercholesterolemic, hypertensive elderly patients receiving concurrent antihypertensive drug therapy, and that it has the additional potential benefit of reducing plasma levels of insulin.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)496-501
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Pharmacology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1997
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)

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