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Results From the SEAS (Simvastatin and Ezetimibe in Aortic Stenosis) Study
Date:7/21/2008

LONDON, July 21 /PRNewswire/ -- The SEAS (Simvastatin and Ezetimibe in Aortic Stenosis) study has investigated the effects of intensive cholesterol lowering with the combination of simvastatin (40 mg daily) and ezetimibe (10 mg daily) in patients with aortic stenosis.

Aortic stenosis (which involves partial blockage of the aortic valve in the heart) is a relatively common disease among older people in Western populations. Left untreated, it can progress to death from heart failure or cardiac arrest. Aortic valve replacement for severe symptoms is the second most frequent type of heart surgery. Apart from surgery, there is no medical therapy known to prevent or heal this condition. Population studies and other scientific research indicate that a high blood level of LDL-cholesterol (so called "bad cholesterol) is a risk factor for developing aortic stenosis and may be involved in the pathological process. Treatment to lower LDL-cholesterol in many other types of patient has been shown to produce substantial reductions in the rates of heart attacks, strokes and other adverse outcomes.

The SEAS study is the first large-scale randomised trial to assess the effects of lowering LDL-cholesterol in patients with aortic stenosis. The study was initiated and designed by academic researchers in Scandinavia, and carried out at 173 clinical centres in Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Germany, UK and Ireland. It included 1873 patients with mild to moderate aortic stenosis without symptoms who were not considered to have a clear indication for treatment with cholesterol-lowering drugs. Patients were randomly assigned to receive either intensive cholesterol lowering with the combination of simvastatin (40 mg daily) and ezetimibe (10 mg daily) or matching placebo. The first patient was included in 2001. The study was completed according to the study plan when the last patient included had been followed for 4 years (March 2008). Vital status at the end of the stu
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