Combination Treatment for Metabolic Syndrome, Heart Disease

August 8, 2006

Madeline Vann
Phone: 504-247-7299

Tulane University researchers are seeking adults with known heart disease and metabolic syndrome to participate in a national, multisite trial of the effectiveness of combining statins and niacin (a B vitamin) in treatment. The study is funded by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Statins are medicines prescribed by doctors to lower "bad" cholesterol levels.

"Nobody knows the best way to manage the health of heart disease patients with metabolic syndrome. Usually we try statins or niacin, which is a B vitamin. This is the first study to look at the possible benefits of using both treatments together," says endocrinologist Vivian Fonseca, principal investigator at Tulane.

Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of health measures including: fat around the waistline, high blood pressure, low levels of HDL "good" cholesterol, high fasting blood sugar levels and high triglycerides. The researchers are seeking men and women over the age of 45 who have established heart disease as well as low HDL-cholesterol and high triglyceride levels.

Eligible participants will receive a free health assessment and will be assigned to a treatment group receiving only statins or the combination of statins and niacin. Participants are expected to continue with the trial for three years. For information about eligibility, contact Pat Reilly at 504-988-4651.

Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000