The effect of low-dose pravastatin in metabolic syndrome for primary prevention of cardiovascular disease in Japan: a post hoc analysis of the MEGA study

J Cardiovasc Pharmacol Ther. 2012 Jun;17(2):153-8. doi: 10.1177/1074248411421777. Epub 2011 Oct 3.


The Management of Elevated Cholesterol in the Primary Prevention Group of Adult Japanese (MEGA) Study demonstrated the beneficial effect of low-dose pravastatin treatment (10-20 mg/d) on cardiovascular disease (CVD) in Japanese patients with mild-to-moderate hypercholesterolemia. However, it is not known whether mild lipid modification is effective even for patients at high risk. In this study, we evaluated low-dose pravastatin treatment in patients with metabolic syndrome in the MEGA Study. Metabolic syndrome (MetSyn) was defined according to the modified US National Cholesterol Education Program criteria. There were 72 coronary heart disease (CHD) events and 130 CVD events in 2636 patients with MetSyn, and 70 CHD events and 125 CVD events in 5196 patients without MetSyn (hazard ratios 1.85 and 1.90, respectively). No significant risk reduction in CHD was found in the diet plus pravastatin group compared with the diet group patients with MetSyn (hazard ratio .78, P = .29). On the other hand, there was a significant 36% CVD risk reduction (P = .01) in the diet plus pravastatin group compared with the diet group patients with MetSyn, with a small number needed to treat (45). These results indicate that low-dose pravastatin provides a substantial beneficial effect for the prevention of CVD in Japanese patients with MetSyn without known CVD, a population at proportionally high risk in primary prevention.

Trial registration: NCT00211705.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anticholesteremic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Anticholesteremic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control*
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Coronary Disease / etiology
  • Coronary Disease / prevention & control
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / complications
  • Metabolic Syndrome / diet therapy
  • Metabolic Syndrome / drug therapy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Pravastatin / administration & dosage
  • Pravastatin / pharmacology*
  • Primary Prevention / methods


  • Anticholesteremic Agents
  • Pravastatin

Associated data