Liver histology changes in nonalcoholic steatohepatitis after one year of treatment with probucol
Background Probucol, a lipid-lowering agent with antioxidant effects, is effective in normalizing liver enzymes in patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). We studied changes in the liver histology of patients with NASH after use of probucol for one year. Methods Ten patients with biopsy-proven NASH were included. Subjects were given 500 mg probucol daily. Liver biopsies were performed before treatment and after one year. Results Eight patients completed treatment. The mean alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) levels decreased from 94 and 55 to 41 and 26, respectively (P = 0.004 and 0.001 respectively). The scores for hepatic steatosis and necroinflammation decreased from 7.4 to 5.6 (P = 0.03). The fibrosis score changed from 1.1 to 1.3 (P = 0.79). No adverse drug effects were observed. Conclusion Probucol is effective in normalizing aminotransferase levels in patients with NASH. It also significantly reduces the histology grade of steatohepatitis after one year of treatment.