Purpose: Familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) requires early treatment. However, statins, which are regarded the first-line therapy, have an influence on redox balance. Antioxidant vitamins are important for many metabolic processes in the developing body. There are few data available on the long-term safety of statin use in children. The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of statin treatment in children with FH on plasma concentrations of antioxidant vitamins: retinol, alpha-tocopherol and coenzyme Q10.
Methods: The first study group consisted of 13 children aged 10-18 years treated with simvastatin for at least 6 months, and the second group comprised 13 age- and sex-matched children with hypercholesterolemia, in whom pharmacological treatment had not been applied yet. Analyses were performed using a high-performance liquid chromatograph coupled with a MS detector.
Results: The analysis did not reveal significant differences in the concentration of retinol, alpha-tocopherol or coenzyme Q10 between the studied groups. The adjustment of the concentrations of the vitamins to the cholesterol level also indicated no significant differences. We found no deficits in antioxidant vitamins in patients treated with statins, or any risk of adverse effects associated with an increase in their concentration.
Conclusion: There is no rationale for additional supplementation using antioxidant vitamins or modification of low-fat and low-cholesterol diet in pediatric patients treated with statins.