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Keywords:

  • efficacy;
  • non-alcoholic steatohepatitis with dyslipidemia;
  • rosuvastatin;
  • treatment

Aim:  Statins, an inhibitor of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-coenzyme A (HMG-CoA) reductase, are reported to be useful for the treatment of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Currently, there is no proven therapy for NASH. In this study, we assessed the efficacy of rosuvastatin in NASH patients with dyslipidemia.

Methods:  Nineteen patients with biopsy-proven NASH with dyslipidemia who agreed to participate in this prospective study were enrolled. The patients were treated for 24 months with 2.5 mg/day rosuvastatin. Clinical and histological alterations were comparatively evaluated before and after treatment. Standard weight-loss counseling was continued during the treatment period. Follow-up liver biopsy was performed in nine patients.

Results:  Twenty-six percent of patients had hyperlipoproteinemia type IIa and 74% had hyperlipoproteinemia type IIb at baseline. Body mass indices were not significantly changed during the treatment. The levels of transaminases were relatively low at the beginning, and were not significantly changed during the treatment. Lipid profiles were significantly improved by the treatment with rosuvastatin for 24 months. While non-alcoholic fatty liver disease activity score and fibrotic stage did not change significantly in all patients, they were improved in 33.3% and 33.3% individual patients, and stayed stable in 33.3% and 55.6%, respectively.

Conclusion:  NASH-related metabolic parameters improved with therapy including histology in some patients. However, one of nine patients had progression of fibrosis during the treatment. Our pilot study demonstrated the efficacy of rosuvastatin for the treatment of NASH with dyslipidemia, even if transaminases are not so elevated and controlled trials are needed in the future.