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Medications

Treatment Options For Reducing Triglycerides

Currently there is no medication available which has been clinically tested and proven to be effective in reducing triglycerides for people with LPLD and related conditions.

Many of the lipid-lowering drugs available have limited effect.  For an explanation of why this is so please see here.  However, in some cases the medications detailed below have been seen to have some effect. If your consultant suggests any of these medications discuss having a trial period to see if they make any difference, and if they cause any side effects.

If you experience side effects, discuss with your consultant whether the benefits of the medication outweigh the side effect. Remember that it is you who are living with the side effect, not your consultant.

If there is no benefit, or you find the side effect to be too unpleasant, speak to your consultant about discontinuing the medication.

Fibrates
Fibrates can reduce total triglyceride levels almost by half in some individuals who have one of the conditions related to LPLD, but for those for who have little or no lipoprotein lipase function the response is limited (see why this is so in the link above).  Fibrates can cause muscle pain.

If there is no benefit, or you find the side effect to be too unpleasant, speak to your consultant about discontinuing the medication.  Read more about fibrates here

Statins
Primarily prescribed to reduce cholesterol there is some evidence that statins can have some effect on the production of chylomicrons.

The co-use of a statin plus ezetimibe has been shown to reduce the production of triglyceride-rich lipoproteins , including that of chylomicrons originating from the intestine. However, this evidence is anecdotal and statins can often cause side effects.

If there is no benefit, or you find the side effect to be too unpleasant, speak to your consultant about discontinuing the medication.  Read more about statins here

Niacin
Within the general population niacin has shown to reduce triglyceride levels by 5%-35% but has not been clinically proven for people with LPLD and related conditions.

It tends not to be prescribed very frequently as its side effects include flushing, light-headedness and severe itching (pruritus).

If there is no benefit, or you find the side effect to be too unpleasant, speak to your consultant about discontinuing the medication.

High-Dose Antioxidant Therapy
This is a therapy based on the administration of two tablets three times daily and the effectiveness of which is described in a clinical case seminar based on three case studies (none of whom had type 2 diabetes or drank excessive amounts of alcohol), published by A.P Heaney, N. Saharer, B. Rameh, J. M. Braganza and P. N. Durrington in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinolgy and Metabolism Vol, 84, No. 4 in 1999.

The discussion notes that the safety profile of AOT is high but caution is needed in patients with renal impairment and/or a family history of phycoses or iron storage disease.

Again, if you see no improvement or experience unwelcome side effects, speak to your consultant about discontinuing this treatment.

If you are prescribed more than one medicine at once, introduce them gradually one-by-one. That way you will know which drug is causing any side-effects you might experience.