Normal cholesterol levels with lovastatin (mevinolin) therapy in a child with homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia following liver transplantation

C. East, Scott M Grundy, D. W. Bilheimer

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Patients with homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia produce no normal low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptors, and as a result, LDL accumulates in plasma, causing severe premature atherosclerosis. Two years ago, liver transplantation was performed in a child with homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia, restoring LDL receptor activity to about 60% of normal and reducing the LDL cholesterol level by 81%. However, the patient's lipoprotein levels remained significantly elevated for her age and sex. Treatment with lovastatin (mevinolin) one year after transplantation produced a marked improvement in the patient's lipoprotein profile. The total and LDL cholesterol levels fell 40% and 49%, respectively, to values within the normal range. The level of very low-density lipoprotein cholesterol fell 41%, and the level of total triglycerides declined 28%. While lovastatin therapy decreased the production rate of LDL by 35%, it did not affect the LDL fractional clearance rate. Thus, the combination of liver transplantation and lovastatin restored total and LDL cholesterol levels to normal in this patient with homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2843-2848
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the American Medical Association
Issue number20
Publication statusPublished - 1986


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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