A Comparison of Ezetimibe and Acarbose in Decreasing Liver Transaminase in Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: A Randomized Clinical Trial

Ali Akbar Hajiaghamohammadi, Arash Miroliaee, Rasool Samimi, Froogh Alborzi, Amir Ziaee



Ezetimibe inhibits the resorption of dietary and biliary cholesterol in the small intestine and decreases insulin resistance in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Acarbose has been used in type 2 diabetes mellitus and metabolic syndrome. This study aims to compare the therapeutic effects of ezetimibe and acarbosein decreasing liver transaminase levels in patients with NAFLD.

Materials and Methods

This was a single center, double-blind, parallel-group study conducted at Bu-Ali Sina Hospital, Qazvin, Iran. In this trial, we enrolled, by simple randomization,  a total of 62 patients diagnosed with NASH. There were 29 patients treated with ezetimibe and 33 who were treated with acarbose over a ten-week period.


Ezetimibe treatment significantly reduced ALT, AST, triglycerides, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP), and serum insulin levels and the insulin resistance homeostasis model assessment (HOMA-IR) index compared to patients treated with acarbose (p‹0.001). Ezetimibe treatment decreased ALT (p=0.05), AST (p=0.01), total cholesterol (p=0.01), HDL cholesterol (p=0.03) and LDL cholesterol (p=0.03) levels to a significantly higher extent.


Both ezetimibe and acarbose improved metabolic and biochemical abnormalities in patients with NASH, however these effects were more prominent with ezetimibe.



Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease; Nonalcoholic Steatohepatitis; NAFLD; NASH; Ezetimibe; Acarbose;Therapy

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