This study was an attempt to establish the extent of increased oxidative stress in hypercholesterolemic patients and to evaluate the effect of atorvastatin on the oxidative stress and antioxidant status. Blood samples of 15 subjects (age and sex matched) from three groups: group I (healthy subjects), group II (hypercholesterolemic patients with atorvastatin treatment) and group III (hypercholesterolemic patients without any hypolipidemic drug) were taken and centrifuged to separate the plasma, which was used for the determination of vitamin E. The separated cells were washed thrice with 0.90 % w/v cold normal saline and used for the assay of the percentage hemolysis of the RBCs, and the determination of malondialdehyde, superoxide dismutase and hemoglobin. The levels of oxidative stress were higher in the hypercholesterolemic in comparison to the control and atorvastatin group. The levels of antioxidants were higher in the atorvastatin group than in the hypercholesterolemic one but were lower than the controls. From these findings, it was concluded that there is an increase in oxidative stress in hypercholesterolemia but it decreased significantly after 2 months of atorvastatin therapy and antioxidant status also improves in patients taking atorvastatin.
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