Combination Therapy Promising for Diabetes Patients with Uncontrolled Cholesterol
Fenofibrate plus statin could provide a novel treatment option for patients with persistant high cholesterol.
Findings from a new study suggest that fenofibrate could reduce to the risk of cardiovascular events in patients with diabetes.
Fenofibrate is used to reduce levels of triglycerides in the blood, which can cause serious health problems. If left untreated, high levels of triglycerides can cause an increased risk of atherosclerosis, and other cardiovascular events.
The drug also reduces LDL cholesterol and increases HDL cholesterol, which may also improve cardiovascular health. Since patients with type 2 diabetes are at an increased risk of experiencing cardiovascular events, controlling cholesterol and triglycerides through exercise, diet, and drug therapy is particularly important.
The investigators in the study, published by JAMA, found that this cholesterol-lowering medication could provide an alternative treatment option for patients with type 2 diabetes who do not respond to statin therapy.
A non-responder to statin therapy is defined as a patient with high levels of triglycerides and low levels of LDL cholesterol, even though they are being treated with cholesterol-lowering medications, such as statins.
In the study, the authors aimed to determine whether fenofibrate plus statins could potentially reduce the risk of cardiovascular events in patients with type 2 diabetes.
These patients are thought to be at a higher risk of experiencing heart attack, stroke, and death due to high levels of triglycerides and low levels of HDL cholesterol.
In the study, the investigators followed 4640 patients included in the Action to Control Cardiovascular Risk in Diabetes Lipid Study for 5 years.
The findings from this study suggest that adding fenofibrate to current treatment regimens may be beneficial because the drug was seen to reduce cardiovascular events in patients taking statins, but have persistent high cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
While the results are positive, there is not enough information to recommend all patients be put on combination therapy. The investigators concluded that additional randomized studies are needed to confirm these findings.