Toplak H, Bilitou A, Alber H, Auer J, Clodi M, Ebenbichler C, FlieBer-Gorzer E, Gelsinger C, Hanusch U, Ludvik B, Maca T, Schober A, Sock R, Speidl WS, Stulnig TM, Weitgasser R, Zirlik A, Koch M, Wienerroither S, Wolowacz SE, Diamand F, Catapano AL. Simulation of bempedoic acid and ezetimibe in the lipid-lowering treatment pathway in Austria using the contemporary SANTORINI cohort of high and very high risk patients. Wein Klin Wochenschr. 2023 Jul;135(13-14):364-74. doi: 10.1007/s00508-023-02221-4

OBJECTIVE: The low-density lipoprotein cholesterol goals in the 2019 European Society of Cardiology/European Atherosclerosis Society dyslipidaemia guidelines necessitate greater use of combination therapies. We describe a real-world cohort of patients in Austria and simulate the addition of oral bempedoic acid and ezetimibe to estimate the proportion of patients reaching goals.

METHODS: Patients at high or very high cardiovascular risk on lipid-lowering treatments (excluding proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 inhibitors) from the Austrian cohort of the observational SANTORINI study were included using specific criteria. For patients not at their risk-based goals at baseline, addition of ezetimibe (if not already received) and subsequently bempedoic acid was simulated using a Monte Carlo simulation.

RESULTS: A cohort of patients (N = 144) with a mean low-density lipoprotein cholesterol of 76.4 mg/dL, with 94% (n = 135) on statins and 24% (n = 35) on ezetimibe monotherapy or in combination, were used in the simulation. Only 36% of patients were at goal (n = 52). Sequential simulation of ezetimibe (where applicable) and bempedoic acid increased the proportion of patients at goal to 69% (n = 100), with a decrease in the mean low-density lipoprotein cholesterol from 76.4 mg/dL at baseline to 57.7 mg/dL overall.

CONCLUSIONS: The SANTORINI real-world data in Austria suggest that a proportion of high and very high-risk patients remain below the guideline-recommended low-density lipoprotein cholesterol goals. Optimising use of oral ezetimibe and bempedoic acid after statins in the lipid-lowering pathway could result in substantially more patients attaining low-density lipoprotein cholesterol goals, likely with additional health benefits.

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