Short term high dose atorvastatin for the prevention of contrast-induced nephropathy in patients undergoing computed tomography angiography

Hamid Sanei, Alireza Hajian-Nejad, Amirreza Sajjadieh-Kajouei, Neda Nazemzade, Nehzat Alizadeh, Peyman Bidram, Behrouz Pourheidar


BACKGROUND: Statins are shown effective by some studies in preventing contrast-induced nephropathy (CIN). We evaluated the effectiveness of atorvastatin in the prevention of CIN in computed tomography angiography (CTA) candidates.

METHODS: This study was conducted on patients referring for elective CTA with normal renal function. Patients received atorvastatin (80 mg/day) or placebo from 24 h before to 48 h after administration of the contrast material. Serum creatinine was measured before and 48 h after contrast material injection. CIN was defined as an increase in serum creatinine level of ≥ 0.5 mg/dl or ≥ 25% of the baseline creatinine.

RESULTS: A total of 236 patients completed the study; 115 atorvastatin, 121 placebo, mean
age = 58.40 ± 9.80 year, 68.6% male. Serum creatinine increased after contrast material injection in both the atorvastatin (1.00 ± 0.16-1.02 ± 0.15 mg/dl, P = 0.017) and placebo groups (1.03 ± 0.17-1.08 ± 0.18 mg/dl, P < 0.001). Controlling for age, gender, comorbidities, drug history, and baseline serum creatinine level, patients who received atorvastatin experienced less increase in serum creatinine after contrast material injection (beta = 0.127, P = 0.034). However, there was no difference between the atorvastatin and placebo groups in the incidence of CIN (4.3 vs. 5.0%, P = 0.535).

CONCLUSION: In patients undergoing CTA, a short-term treatment with high dose atorvastatin is effective in preventing contrast-induced renal dysfunction, in terms of less increase in serum creatinine level after contrast material injection. Further trials including larger sample of patients and longer follow-ups are warranted.


Keywords: Kidney Diseases, Multidetector Computed Tomography, Contrast Media, Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors, Atorvastatin


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