[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Among the recently reported cholesterol-lowering drug trials, the JUPITER (Justification for the Use of Statins in Primary Prevention) trial is unique: it reports a substantial decrease in the risk of cardiovascular diseases among patients without coronary heart disease and with normal or low cholesterol levels.
Careful review of both results and methods used in the trial and comparison with expected data.
The trial was flawed. It was discontinued (according to prespecified rules) after fewer than 2 years of follow-up, with no differences between the 2 groups on the most objective criteria. Clinical data showed a major discrepancy between significant reduction of nonfatal stroke and myocardial infarction but no effect on mortality from stroke and myocardial infarction. Cardiovascular mortality was surprisingly low compared with total mortality-between 5% and 18%-whereas the expected rate would have been close to 40%. Finally, there was a very low case-fatality rate of myocardial infarction, far from the expected number of close to 50%. The possibility that bias entered the trial is particularly concerning because of the strong commercial interest in the study.
The results of the trial do not support the use of statin treatment for primary prevention of cardiovascular diseases and raise troubling questions concerning the role of commercial sponsors.
Archives of internal medicine 06/2010; 170(12):1032-6. DOI:10.1001/archinternmed.2010.184 · 13.25 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) has been explored for use in predicting cardiovascular risk. The recent Justification for the Use of Statins in Primary Prevention: An Intervention Trial Evaluating Rosuvastatin (JUPITER) study found that statin therapy reduced cardiovascular events in those with low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels below current treatment thresholds (≤130 mg/dL, 3.4 = mmol/L), but with elevated hs-CRP levels (≥2.0 mg/L). This study examines the cost-effectiveness of statin treatment for individuals with elevated hs-CRP but normal LDL cholesterol.
A Markov decision-analytic model was conducted from the U.S. societal perspective. Data from JUPITER were used to estimate rates of myocardial infarction, angina and stroke. Statin costs were based on generic simvastatin 80 mg, equipotent to the rosuvastatin 20 mg dose used in JUPITER. Primary prevention was the focus and secondary prevention was not modeled explicitly. Quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) were calculated using nationally representative preference-based utility weights. One-way sensitivity analyses and multivariate probabilistic sensitivity analysis were used to explore uncertainty in model parameters as well as estimate the likelihood of cost-effectiveness when all event rates, costs and utilities were drawn randomly from distributions reflecting uncertainty.
Statin therapy cost $10,889/QALY for vascular event prevention in this population. Results were sensitive to the cost of statin treatment. Based on 10,000 simulations, statin therapy was cost-effective in 99.5% of simulations, using a willingness-to-pay threshold of $20,000/QALY, and 100% of simulations using a threshold of $50,000/QALY.
Treatment with statins in patients with elevated hs-CRP but normal cholesterol appears to be cost-effective. Limitations of this study include the assumption that an equipotent dose of simvastatin resulted in the same risk reduction as rosuvastatin. Further, post-event states simulated the average experience of a patient. Continued statin use, subsequent events and/or heart failure were not explicitly modeled.
Current Medical Research and Opinion 10/2010; 26(10):2485-97. DOI:10.1185/03007995.2010.516994 · 2.37 Impact Factor
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