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Statins and Carotid Intima-Media Thickness Reduction: An Up-to-Date Review

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Carotid artery intima-media thickness measured by ultrasound has been shown to be correlated with the presence of cardiovascular disease and is now accepted and used as a surrogate marker for atherosclerotic disease, an important organ damage of hypercholesterolemia. In particular, statins reduce ischemic heart disease, improve endothelial function, reduce pro-inflammatory cytokines, reduce left ventricular hypertrophy and adverse remodeling, and slow/arrest atherosclerotic process. This last effect represents one of the most important targets of lipid-lowering drugs, in particular, carotid intima-media thickness, and an early-onset of atherosclerotic process. The acute anti-inflammatory effects of statins should further be explored as a potential mediator of change in intima-media thickness. Larger randomized controlled trials with selected patients and more detailed measurements of carotid intima-media thickness are needed to determine the clinical practice implications of these findings in participants who have asymptomatic evidence of atherosclerosis. The aim of this review is to explore the effectiveness of several used statins on carotid intima-media thickness regression.

Keywords: Atherosclerosis; atorvastatin; ezetimibe; fluvastatin; intima-media thickness; lovastatin; pravastatin; rosuvastatin; simvastatin

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Via G. De Rogatis, 12, 71016 San Severo (FG), Italia.

Publication date: 2009-05-01

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  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.
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