Background: Recent data suggest that non-targeted treatment with fibrates modestly reduces the risk of incident cardiovascular events. However the effect of fibrate treatment may be particularly beneficial in patients with guideline-endorsed indications for therapy due to evidence of atherogenic dyslipidemia. We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to investigate the influence of fibrates on vascular risk reduction in persons with atherogenic dyslipidemia.
Methods: Systematic search of Pubmed, CENTRAL and recent reviews was conducted to identify atherogenic dyslipidemia (serum high density lipoprotein cholesterol [HDL-C]<40 mg/dl or triglycerides >200 mg/dl) cohorts from randomized controlled trials. RR with 95% CI was used as a measure of the association between fibrate therapy and risk of cardiovascular diseases, after pooling data across trials in a random-effects model.
Results: Six trials met selection criteria. Compared to placebo, the greatest benefit with fibrate treatment was seen in 7389 subjects with high triglycerides, fibrate therapy reduced risk of vascular events (RR 0.75, 95% CI 0.65 to 0.86, P<0.001); and in 5068 subjects with both high triglycerides and low HDL-C (RR 0.71, 95% CI 0.62 to 0.82, P<0.001). Less benefit was noted in 15,303 subjects selected for low HDL-C (RR 0.84, 95% CI 0.77 to 0.91, P<0.001). Among 9872 subjects with neither high triglycerides nor low HDL-C, fibrate therapy did not reduce subsequent vascular events (RR 0.96, 95% CI 0.85 to 1.09, P=0.53).
Conclusions: Fibrate treatment directed at markers of atherogenic dyslipidemia substantially reduce subsequent vascular event risk.
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