Broad Use of High-Intensity Statin Therapy May Be Warranted

(HealthDay News) — High-intensity statin therapy is associated with coronary atherosclerosis regression, regardless of baseline lipoprotein or C-reactive protein (CRP) levels, according to a study published in The American Journal of Cardiology.

Rishi Puri, MBBS, PhD, from the Cleveland Clinic Coordinating Center for Clinical Research, and colleagues examined the impact of baseline lipoprotein and CRP levels on coronary atheroma regression induced by high-intensity statin therapy. 

A total of 1,881 patients from eight prospective randomized trials, who maintained or switched to 18 to 24 months of high-intensity statin therapy, were stratified according to baseline lipoprotein and CRP levels.

With high-intensity statin therapy, the researchers observed significant reductions from baseline in LDL cholesterol, non-HDL cholesterol, triglycerides and CRP, and increases in HDL cholesterol (all P<.001). These changes correlated with regressions of 0.7% of percentage atheroma volume (PAV) and 8.2 mm³ in total atheroma volume (TAV) (both P<.001). 

Across baseline quintiles of LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, non-HDL cholesterol, triglycerides or CRP, there were no significant differences in the changes in PAV or TAV. 

Most patients demonstrated plaque regression across all measured lipoprotein and CRP levels.

“These findings provide support for the latest U.S. guideline recommendations for the broad use of high-intensity statin therapy in all patients with atherosclerosis, regardless of baseline lipid status,” the researchers wrote.

Two authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.


  1. Puri R et al. Am J Cardiol. 2014;114(10):1465-1472.