In a nutshell
This study investigated the long-term safety and effectiveness of bempedoic acid (BPA).
They found that BPA was effective and well-tolerated over 1 year of treatment.
Coronary artery disease (CAD) is caused by fatty build-up in the arteries. Patients with CAD may be prescribed drugs to lower fat (lipid) levels in the blood. These are called lipid-lowering therapies. Statins are the most commonly used lipid-lowering drugs. Some patients do not get adequate control of lipid levels with statins.
Bempedoic acid (BPA) is a drug being developed for lowering cholesterol levels. High cholesterol is associated with CAD. Some studies show BPA is useful as a lipid-lowering drug on the short-term. It is unclear if BPA is safe and effective long-term.
Methods & findings
This study included 2230 patients with CAD. Patients were randomly assigned to BPA or placebo treatment. All patients were also on statin therapy during the trial. The study lasted 52 weeks. The effect of treatment was measured by cholesterol levels at the end of the study.
BPA treatment reduced LDL (bad) cholesterol levels significantly compared to placebo. This effect was observed at 12 weeks and was maintained until the end of the study.
Side effects were reported at similar rates in BPA and placebo patients (78.5 vs. 78.7%). Most side effects were mild to moderate. These included common cold, muscle pain, upper respiratory and urinary tract infections. The number of patients that withdrew from the trial due to side effects was higher in the BPA group (10.9%) than in the placebo group (7.1%).
The bottom line
The authors concluded that BPA was effective and well-tolerated over 1 year of treatment.
The fine print
This study is ongoing to further investigate the long-term safety of BPA.
If you have any concerns regarding CAD treatment, please consult with your doctor.
Published By :
The New England Journal of Medicine
Mar 14, 2019
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