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J Stroke > Volume 18(1); 2016 > Article
Heo, Song, Nam, Kim, Kim, Lee, Lee, Yoo, Kim, Lee, Yoon, Kim, and EUREKA Investigators: Effect and Safety of Rosuvastatin in Acute Ischemic Stroke

Abstract

Background and Purpose

The benefit of statins in acute stroke remains uncertain. Statins may prevent stroke recurrence during the acute stage of stroke via pleiotropic effects. However, statins may increase the risk of intracerebral hemorrhage. We investigated the effect and safety of rosuvastatin in acute stroke patients.

Methods

This randomized, double-blind, multi-center trial compared rosuvastatin 20 mg and placebo in statin-naïve stroke patients who underwent diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) within 48 hours after symptom onset. The primary outcome was occurrence of new ischemic lesions on DWI at 5 or 14 days.

Results

This trial was stopped early after randomization of 316 patients due to slow enrollment. Among 289 patients with at least one follow-up imaging, the frequency of new ischemic lesions on DWI was not different between groups (rosuvastatin: 27/137, 19.7% vs. placebo: 36/152, 23.6%) (relative risk 0.83, 95% confidence interval 0.53–1.30). Infarct volume growth at 5 days (log-transformed volume change, rosuvastatin: 0.2±1.0 mm3 vs. placebo: 0.3±1.3 mm3; P=0.784) was not different, either. However, hemorrhagic infarction or parenchymal/subarachnoid hemorrhage on gradient-recalled echo magnetic resonance imaging occurred less frequently in the rosuvastatin group (6/137, 4.4%) than the placebo group (22/152, 14.5%, P=0.007). Among 314 patients with at least one dose of study medication, progression or clinical recurrence of stroke tended to occur less frequently in the rosuvastatin group (1/155, 0.6% vs. 7/159, 4.4%, P=0.067). Adverse events did not differ between groups.

Conclusions

The efficacy of rosuvastatin in reducing recurrence in acute stroke was inconclusive. However, statin use was safe and reduced hemorrhagic transformation.

Introduction

Statins are effective in primary and secondary prevention of stroke [1-3]. Their long-term beneficial effects may be primarily mediated by their lipid-lowering effects. Statins may also work effectively in preventing recurrence or progression during the acute stage of stroke because they have antithrombotic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidative effects [4-7].
Several observational studies have suggested that statin use before or during the acute stage of stroke was associated with better functional outcome and reduced mortality [7-9]. By contrast, intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH) developed more frequently in patients treated with high-dose statins during the subacute or chronic stage of ischemic stroke in large randomized trials [2,10]. Since the risk of hemorrhagic transformation is greater during the acute stage of stroke, statin treatment in acute stroke raises the concern of increased ICH risk. However, data from randomized trials are insufficient to establish whether statins are effective and safe in patients with acute ischemic stroke [11]. Furthermore, statins are not recommended in stroke guidelines as an agent with neuroprotective actions to improve outcome in acute stroke [12]. Therefore, we investigated the effect and safety of rosuvastatin in acute ischemic stroke patients.

Methods

This double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized, multicenter study was approved by the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety, Korea, and the institutional review board at each study center. Written informed consent was obtained from each patient. This trial (Effects of very early use of rosuvastatin in preventing recurrence of ischemic stroke [EUREKA]) was registered on ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT01364220).

Study population

We enrolled patients over 20 years old diagnosed with acute ischemic stroke on diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) within 48 hours after symptom onset who had been untreated with a statin for the previous 3 months. Patients also should show any degree of stenosis on the relevant artery of infarction on DWI. Patients with hemorrhagic stroke, history of symptomatic hemorrhagic stroke, high-risk cardiac sources of embolism, or stroke of other determined etiology were excluded. Other exclusion criteria are described in Supplementary data.
The modified intention-to-treat population consisted of patients who underwent a baseline magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), had triglyceride (TG) < 500 mg/dL, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol < 190 mg/dL, and took at least one dose of study medication. The per-protocol (PP) population consisted of patients who completed scheduled MRIs without a major protocol violation.

Randomization, blinding, and interventions

Patients were randomized 1:1 to receive either rosuvastatin or placebo. Permutated-block randomization with a block size of 4 was generated by an independent clinical trials center (Severance Hospital, Yonsei University Health System, Seoul, Korea). After patients were screened and completed enrollment, drugs were assigned a unique study number, selected sequentially from the central randomization list that corresponded to the treatment pack, and allocated in a double-blind manner. The drug was administered within 18 hours after baseline MRI and then daily during the 14-day treatment period. Patients received either one 20-mg tablet or a placebo tablet, once daily.

Sample size

We hypothesized that, compared to placebo, rosuvastatin would reduce the occurrence of new ischemic lesions on MRI by 30%. To test our hypothesis, assuming a type I error of 5% and a power of 80%, sample sizes were calculated as 260 in each group. The proportion in the rosuvastatin group was assumed to be 0.40 under the null hypothesis and 0.28 under the alternative hypothesis, based on a previous study that recognized new ischemic lesions on DWI in 34%-47.4% of patients during the first week after baseline DWI taken within 24 hours after symptom onset [13,14]. The test statistic used was the 2-sided Fisher’s exact test. Assuming a drop-out rate of 5%, the total number of patients needed was 547.

Imaging protocol

To be eligible, patients underwent DWI, fluid attenuated inversion recovery, gradient-recalled echo (GRE), and magnetic resonance (MR) angiography that included both the circle of Willis and neck vessels at baseline using a 1.5 T or 3.0 T MR scanner. Computed tomography (CT) angiography was also allowed. The follow-up imaging schedule included DWI, GRE, and fluid attenuated inversion recovery at 5 ± 1 days and 14 ± 2 days using the same MR scanner. The images were saved in Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) format and sent to the independent clinical trials center for review of adequacy and analyses.

Adjudication of images

Two stroke neurologists blinded to clinical and group information reviewed angiographic images and determined the presence of relevant artery stenosis in ischemic lesions on DWI. In cases of discrepancy between the reviewers, the decision was made by a third reviewer (a neuroradiologist). The reviewers also measured the degree of stenosis of the relevant artery based on methods used in the North American Symptomatic Carotid Endarterectomy Trial for extracranial arteries and the Warfarin and Aspirin for Symptomatic Intracranial Arterial Stenosis trial for intracranial arteries [15,16] and categorized stenosis as ≥ 50% or < 50%.

Outcomes

Imaging outcomes were assessed by 2 reviewers blinded to clinical and group information. The primary outcome was occurrence of a new ischemic lesion on DWI or fluid attenuated inversion recovery at 5 or 14 days. The secondary outcomes were the volume change of ischemic lesions and the percent improvement in National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) at 5 days and 14 days. The safety outcome included adverse events, laboratory results, and the presence of any intracranial hemorrhagic transformation on GRE, which included hemorrhagic infarction (HI) and parenchymal hemorrhage based on European Cooperative Acute Stroke Study definitions [17]. In case of a discrepancy in the presence of new lesions or hemorrhagic transformation, conclusions were reached by consensus. The volume of infarctions was measured on DWI in a semi-automatic manner using Xelis software (Infinitt, Seoul, Korea). The intraclass correlation coefficient between the reviewers for log-transformed volume measurements was 0.99. The percent improvement was defined as ([NIHSS at 5 days or 14 days – NIHSS at baseline]/NIHSS at baseline) × 100 [18].
Details of the conduction of study are provided in Supplemental data.

Statistical analysis

The efficacy outcome was compared based on the modified intention-to-treat and PP population. Safety was assessed in all patients who took at least one dose of study medication. We used the χ2 test with continuity correction to compare the occurrence of newly developed DWI lesion, the independent sample t test to compare the percent improvement in NIHSS, and the mixed-effect model to compare the change in log-transformed DWI lesion volume between the rosuvastatin and placebo groups. The χ2 test or Fisher’s exact test was performed to compare safety outcomes. Statistical analyses were performed using SAS statistical software, version 9.2 (SAS institute Inc., Cary, NC). Data are presented as number (%) or mean ± standard deviation. Two-sided P values < 0.05 were considered statistically significant.

Results

Baseline characteristics

A total of 28 centers in Korea participated in this study, and 25 centers enrolled at least 1 patient. Among 318 patients enrolled, 316 patients met inclusion criteria and were randomized, and 314 took at least one dose of study medication (155 in the rosuvastatin group and 159 in the placebo group). Among them, the primary outcome was assessed in 289 patients (Figure 1). Baseline demographic characteristics were similar between the groups except total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels, which were higher in the rosuvastatin group (Table 1, Supplemental Table 1). Characteristics of the patients whose primary outcome was not assessed are provided in as a Supplemental Table 2.

Efficacy outcomes

Efficacy was compared in the modified intention-to-treat population (137 patients in the rosuvastatin group and 152 patients in the placebo group). New ischemic lesions on DWI were observed less frequently in the rosuvastatin group (27 patients [19.7%]) than in the placebo group (36 patients [23.6%]), but the difference was not statistically significant (absolute difference 3.9%, relative risk [RR] 0.83, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.53-1.30, P=0.500) (Figure 2A). Infarction volumes on DWI increased at 5 days and then decreased at 14 days in both groups. Infarct volume growth at 5 days (log-transformed volume change, rosuvastatin: 0.2 ± 1.0 mm3 vs. placebo: 0.3 ± 1.3 mm3; P=0.784) and percent improvement in NIHSS (rosuvastatin vs. placebo: 36.6 ± 56.7 vs. 27.1 ± 90.8 at 5 days, P=0.282 and 51.4 ± 51.6 vs. 42.7 ± 91.5 at 14 days, P=0.315) were not different.

Safety outcomes

Of 314 patients, 3 in the placebo group (1.9%) and none in the rosuvastatin group demonstrated clinical recurrence of ischemic stroke (P=0.248). Progression or clinical recurrence of stroke was reported as a serious adverse event in 7 patients (4.4%) in the placebo group, but in only 1 patient (0.6%) in the rosuvastatin group (P=0.067). The frequency of adverse events did not differ between the groups (Table 2).
On GRE, HI was observed in 6 patients at baseline (5/155 [3.2%] in the rosuvastatin and 1/159 [0.65] in the placebo groups). Occurrence of any new intracranial hemorrhagic transformation (HI, parenchymal hemorrhage, or subarachnoid hemorrhage) or aggravation of pre-existing HI1 at base-line (defined as conversion to HI2 or parenchymal hemorrhage) was assessed in 289 patients with available GRE at 5 or 14 days. Any new HI was observed less frequently in the rosuvastatin group (6/137, 4.4%) than in the placebo group (22/152, 14.5%) (P=0.007). In the rosuvastatin group, 1 patient developed parenchymal hemorrhage (P=0.478), and 1 patient developed focal cortical subarachnoid hemorrhage on GRE (P=0.478), both of whom were asymptomatic (Table 3).

Post-hoc subgroup analysis

We compared the occurrence of a new ischemic lesion on DWI in patients with relevant artery stenosis ≥ 50%. New ischemic lesions were found in 19 of 83 patients (22.9%) in the rosuvastatin group and 25 of 87 patients (28.7%) in the placebo group (RR, 0.80; 95% CI, 0.48-1.33; P=0.387). Twenty of 78 patients (25.6%) in the rosuvastatin group and 26 of 80 patients (32.5%) in the placebo group with multiple lesions on baseline DWI had new lesions (RR, 0.79; 95% CI, 0.48-1.29; P=0.346) (Figure 2A).

PP Population

A total of 118 patients in the rosuvastatin group and 129 patients in the placebo group were included for the PP population (Figure 1). New ischemic lesions were found in 24 patients (20.3%) in the rosuvastatin group and 34 patients (26.3%) in the placebo group (RR 0.77; 95% CI, 0.49-1.22, P=0.335) (Figure 2B). In the subgroup with relevant artery stenosis ≥ 50%, new ischemic lesions were detected in 17 of 79 patients (21.5%) in the rosuvastatin group and 24 of 78 patients (30.8%) in the placebo group (RR, 0.70; 95% CI 0.41–1.20; P=0.192). In the subgroup with multiple lesions, new ischemic lesions were observed in 17 of 69 (24.8%) patients in the rosuvastatin group and 25 of 69 (36.2%) patients in the placebo group (RR 0.68; 95% CI, 0.41–1.14; P=0.145) (Figure 2B).

Discussion

This study was inconclusive to prove the hypothesis that rosuvastatin may effectively reduce early recurrence of new ischemic lesions, probably due to insufficient sample size. We could not include a sufficient number of patients because of slow enrollment. Despite insufficient evidence that use of a statin is effective or safe in acute ischemic stroke, investigators were reluctant to administer placebo, since statin use on discharge became a performance measure for primary stroke center certification [19]. However, a non-significant trend for less frequent appearance of new ischemic lesions on DWI or progression or clinical recurrence of stroke was observed in the rosuvastatin group. Thus, our findings support previous observational studies showing a benefit of statins in the acute stage of stroke [7,8].
Previous randomized trials using statins in acute stroke included small numbers of patients and showed no clinical effect or even worse outcomes after statin treatment [20-22]. Serial MRIs were used to determine outcomes in this study. Defining clinical recurrence of stroke is sometimes difficult during the acute stage because pre-existing symptoms often fluctuate or progress. Many ischemic lesions that are recognized on DWI during the acute stage of stroke are clinically silent, but they are direct surrogate markers of recurrence. Ischemic injury progresses during the acute stage of infarctions [23] and may cause growth of infarct volume. By using MRI surrogate markers such as DWI and GRE, subclinical occurrence of ischemic and expansion of ischemic lesions as well as hemorrhagic outcomes might be assessed accurately.
In this study, new ischemic lesions in the placebo group developed less often than expectation which was assumed based on previous reports [13,14]. This might be partly ascribed to the high frequency of use with dual or triple antiplatelet agents (about 75%) in this study population. We hypothesized that the use of statins could reduce the risk of early recurrence of either symptomatic or asymptomatic ischemic lesions and expansion of ischemic lesions in acute stroke. This was because antithrombotic and anti-inflammatory effects of statins have been demonstrated in many experimental studies. Statins also play a beneficial role in stabilizing atherosclerotic plaques [6,24]. In the subgroup analysis of our trial, the RR reduction of new DWI lesion occurrence in the rosuvastatin group was greater in patients who were more likely to have had an atherothrombotic infarction, such as a 20% reduction in patients with relevant artery stenosis ≥ 50% and 21% reduction in those with multiple lesions in the territory of relevant artery stenosis. In the PP population (excluding patients without relevant artery stenosis after assessment), the difference was much greater. Although it is possible that statins are more effective in the prevention of stroke with an atherothrombotic mechanism, this hypothesis was inconclusive in our study.
In this study, rosuvastatin 20 mg was safe in that there were no differences in the development of adverse events. Notably, the occurrence of HI on GRE was remarkably reduced in the rosuvastatin group. In the Stroke Prevention by Aggressive Reduction in Cholesterol Levels trial, atorvastatin 80 mg increased the risk of ICH (hazard ratio, 1.68; 95% CI 1.09-2.59) [2], and in the Heart Protection Study, simvastatin 40 mg was associated with approximately 2-fold increased risk of ICH in patients with prior stroke [10]. However, statin use was not associated with ICH in a large cohort study in patients with recent ischemic stroke [25], and in a meta-analysis of primary and secondary prevention studies of statins [26,27]. Our findings suggest that statin use in the acute stage of stroke may protect against microvascular (capillary) damage and prevent HI. Matrix metalloproteinase-9 is a key proteinase that mediates HI by disrupting microvascular integrity [28]. Statins reduce expression of matrix metalloproteinase-9 in endothelial cells, astrocytes, and human plasma [29,30]. Thus, the protective effect of statins against occurrence of HI might be in part mediated by inhibiting matrix metalloproteinase-9.
This study has several limitations. First, this study did not include patients with cardioembolic sources and was conducted in one Asian country. Therefore, our results should be interpreted with caution. Second, the median NIHSS of the study population at screening was 3, which suggests that enrolled patients had rather milder stroke. Although we assessed the outcome in the subgroup with significant stenosis of the relevant artery, this might affect the outcome such as the frequency of progression or recurrence of stroke. Furthermore, the primary outcome of this trial was not clinical stroke recurrence, but imaging-based recurrent ischemic lesions. As a result, the data of clinical stroke recurrence was captured based on the investigators’ reports of adverse events. Finally, this study was stopped early due to slow enrollment, which resulted in underpowered results.
In conclusion, by using MRI surrogate markers such as DWI and GRE, subclinical occurrence of ischemic as well as hemorrhagic outcomes may be assessed very sensitively and accurately with a relatively smaller sample size. Further studies are required to elucidate the potential benefit of statins in acute stroke patients to conclusively support the routine use of statins.

Acknowledgments

Steering Committee: Ji Hoe Heo (Principle investigator, Chair), Dae Ryong Kang , Eung Yeop Kim, Jong S. Kim, Young Dae Kim, Byung Chul Lee, Kyung-Yul Lee, Hyo Suk Nam, Byung-Woo Yoon. Data Safety and Monitoring Board: Min Soo Park (Chair), Chung Mo Nam, Seung-Koo Lee, Kwang Ho Lee. Imaging Review and Adjudication: Dongbeom Song (Chair), Eung Yeop Kim, Jinna Kim, Eun-Hye Kim, Ki-Jeong Lee, Joonsang Yoo. Statistical Analysis: Youn Nam Kim. Enrolling Sites and Investigators: Severance Hospital: Ji Hoe Heo, Dong Hyun Lee, Jinkwon Kim, Tae-Jin Song; Samsung Changwon Hospital: Myoung-Jin Cha, Kyoung-Soo Lee; Kyung Hee University Hospital: Dae-Il Chang; Yeungnam University Medical Center: Jun Lee; Ewha Womans University Hospital: Yong-Jae Kim; Chunnam National University Hospital: Ki-Hyun Cho, Man-Seok Park, Joon-Tae Kim; Kangdong Hospital: Hye-Yeon Choi; Wonju Severance Hospital: Seo Hyun Km, Ji-Yong Lee; Sanggye Paik Hospital: Sang Won Han, Jae Hyeon Park; Changwon Fatima Hospital: Yo Han Jung, Jay-Cheol Kwon; Dongsan Medical Center: Sung-Il Sohn, Kyung-Hee Cho; Sacred Heart Hospital: Byung-Chul Lee, Mi Sun Oh; Samsung Medical Center: Oh Young Bang, Geyong-Moon Kim; Inha University Hospital: Joung-Ho Rha; Seoul National University Hospital: Byung-Woo Yoon; Pusan Paik Hospital: Eung Gyu Kim; Hangang Sacred Heart Hospital: Yang Ki Minn; Gangnam Severance Hospital: Kyung-Yul Lee; Asan Medical Center: Jong S. Kim; Chosun University Hospital: Seong Hwan Ahn; National Medical Center: Jong Yun Lee; Konyang University Hospital: Kee Ook Lee; Korea University Hospital: Woo-Keun Seo; Yeouido St. Mary’s Hospital: A-Hyun Cho; Pusan National University Hospital: Han-Jin Cho.

Notes

This trial was supported by a research grant from AstraZeneca and the Korea Healthcare Technology R&D Project, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Republic of Korea (HI08C2149, HI10C2020). The investigators are fully responsible for the design of the study and protocol; conduct of the study; collection, monitoring, management, analyses, and interpretation of data; and writing and submission of the manuscript, without involvement of the sponsors.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors have no financial conflicts of interest.

Supplementary Material

SUPPLEMENTARY DATA
jos-2015-01578-supple1.pdf

Figure 1.
Trial profile. CK, creatine kinase; LDL, low-density lipoprotein; TSH, thyroid-stimulating hormone; mITT, modified intention-to-treat population; MRI, magnetic resonance imaging; PP, per-protocol population; DWI, diffusion-weighted imaging.
jos-2015-01578f1.tif
Figure 2.
New ischemic lesions on diffusion-weighted imaging in the modified intention-to-treat population (A) and per-protocol population (B).
jos-2015-01578f2.tif
Table 1.
Baseline characteristics of the rosuvastatin and placebo groups
Rosuvastatin (n=155) Placebo (n=159) P value
Demographics
 Sex (male) 87 (56.1) 101 (63.5) 0.222
 Age (year) 65.4 ± 12.3 64.6 ± 11.3 0.564
 Body mass index (kg/m2) 23.8 ± 3.1 24.1 ± 3.0 0.417
 Abdominal circumference (cm) 86.2 ± 9.4 87.2 ± 9.3 0.388
Past history
 Hypertension 104 (67.0) 102 (64.1) 0.667
 Diabetes mellitus 50 (32.2) 51 (32.0) 1.000
 Hypercholesterolemia 24 (15.4) 26 (16.3) 0.955
 Smoking 72 (46.4) 67 (42.1) 0.512
 Coronary artery occlusive disease 1 (0.6) 4 (2.5) 0.371
 Peripheral artery occlusive disease 2 (1.2) 0 (0.0) 0.243
 Previous stroke 16 (10.3) 13 (8.1) 0.644
Concomitant medication
 Antihypertensive 67 (43.2) 73 (45.9) 0.715
 Antiplatelet 0.677
  Aspirin 39 (25.1) 39 (24.5)
  Clopidogrel 9 (5.8) 10 (6.2)
  Aspirin and clopidogrel 88 (56.7) 92 (57.8)
  Aspirin and cilostazol 5 (3.2) 9 (5.6)
  Aspirin, clopidogrel, and cilostazol 14 (9.0) 9 (5.6)
 Anticoagulant 0 (0.0) 1 (0.6) 1.000
 Lipid-lowering drug (other than statin) 2 (1.2) 1 (0.6) 0.619
 Diabetes mellitus drug 34 (21.9) 35 (22.0) 1.000
 Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug 8 (5.1) 13 (8.1) 0.399
 Intravenous tissue plasminogen activator 4 (2.5) 5 (3.1) 1.000
Log-transformed baseline diffusion-weighted imaging volume (mm3) 6.7 ± 1.9 6.8 ± 2.0 0.761
Baseline National Institute of Health Stroke Scale 3 [1-6] 3 [2-5.3] 0.713
Degree of stenosis 0.703
 No stenosis 12 (7.7) 12 (8.8)
 < 50% 52 (36.4) 56 (38.6)
 50%-99% 47 (32.9) 53 (36.6)
 Occlusion 44 (30.8) 36 (24.8)
Lab
 White blood cells (× 103/μL) 7.96 ± 89.2 7.48 ± 84.3 0.929
 Neutrophils (× 103/μL) 6.24 ± 1.6 6.13 ± 1.74 0.616
 Hemoglobin (g/dL) 14 ± 1.6 14 ± 1.6 0.823
 Hematocrit (%) 41 ± 4.5 41.1 ± 4.4 0.817
 Platelet count (× 103/μL) 246.3 ± 60.3 240.1 ± 65.5 0.296
 Blood urea nitrogen (mg/dL) 15.1 ± 5.2 15.5 ± 5.6 0.575
 Creatinine (mg/dL) 0.83 ± 0.208 0.865 ± 0.253 0.244
 Fasting glucose (mg/dL) 131.2 ± 57.8 136.8 ± 57.1 0.256
 Albumin (g/dL) 4.1 ± 0.34 4.14 ± 0.36 0.302
 Uric acid (mg/dL) 5.06 ± 1.36 5.06 ± 1.53 0.770
 high sensitivity C-reactive protein (mg/dL) 2.517 ± 7.111 2.114 ± 6.794 0.491
 Uric acid (mg/dL) 5.06 ± 1.36 5.06 ± 1.53 0.770
 high sensitivity C-reactive protein (mg/dL) 2.517 ± 7.111 2.114 ± 6.794 0.491
Values are number (%), mean±standard deviation, or median [interquartile range].
Table 2.
Adverse events
Rosuvastatin (n=155) Placebo (n=159) P value
Any AE 88 (56.8) 87 (54.7) 0.800
Any SAE 4 (2.6) 8 (5.0) 0.379
 SAE in nervous system 2 (1.3) 8 (5.0) 0.104
  Progression or clinical recurrence of stroke* 1 (0.6) 7 (4.4) 0.067
  Brain herniation 0 (0.0) 1 (0.6) 1.000
  Intracerebral hemorrhage 1 (0.6) 0 (0.0) 0.494
 SAE in cardiac system 2 (1.2) 1 (0.6) 0.619
  Atrial fibrillation 1 (0.6) 0 (0.0) 0.494
  Chest discomfort 0 (0.0) 1 (0.6) 1.000
  Myocardial infarction 1 (0.6) 0 (0.0) 0.494
 SAE in gastrointestinal system 0 (0.0) 1 (0.6) 1.000
  Upper gastrointestinal bleeding 0 (0.0) 1 (0.6) 1.000
Any AE resulting in discontinuation of study drug 5 (2.1) 4 (1.9) 0.539
Any AE with incidence of ≥ 5%
 Constipation 13 (8.4) 15 (9.4) 0.726
 Headache 9 (5.8) 15 (9.4) 0.319
 Progression or clinical recurrence of stroke 11 (7.1) 13 (8.2) 0.883
 Coronary artery occlusive disease 16 (10.3) 12 (7.5) 0.506
 Hypertension 12 (7.7) 14 (8.8) 0.891
Musculoskeletal AE
 Myalgia 3 (1.9) 4 (2.5) 1.000
 Myopathy 0 (0.0) 0 (0.0) 1.000
 Rhabdomyolysis 0 (0.0) 0 (0.0) 1.000
Laboratory values
 CK elevation >3×ULN 0 (0.0) 0 (0.0) 1.000
 Aspartate aminotransferase or alanine aminotransferase elevation >3×ULN 0 (0.0) 0 (0.0) 1.000
Death 1 (0.4) 1 (0.5) 1.000
Values are number (%).
* Two patients with clinical recurrent stroke were included;
Three patients with clinical recurrent stroke (including two patients reported in SAE) were included.
AE, adverse event; SAE, serious adverse event; CK, creatine kinase; ULN, upper limit of the normal range.
Table 3.
Occurrence of intracranial hemorrhagic transformation on gradient-recalled echo (GRE)
Rosuvastatin (n = 137) Placebo (n = 152) P value
HI1 2 (1.4) 15 (9.9) 0.002
HI2 2* (1.4) 7 (4.6) 0.177
PH1 1 (0.7) 0 (0.0) 0.478
PH2 0 (0.0) 0 (0.0)
Radiological subarachnoid hemorrhage 1 (0.7) 0 (0.0) 0.478
Any hemorrhagic transformation 6 (4.3) 22 (14.5) 0.007
Values are number (%).
Hemorrhagic transformation was categorized into small petechial hemorrhagic infarction (HI1), confluent petechial HI (HI2), small parenchymal hemorrhage (PH1, <30% of infarct, mild mass effect), and large PH (PH2, >30% of infarct, marked mass effect).[17]
* including 1 patient who had HI-1 on baseline GRE and HI-2 on follow-up GRE.
including 1 patient who had HI-1 on baseline GRE and HI-2 on follow-up GRE, 4 patients who had HI-1 on 5-day GRE and HI-2 on 14-day GRE.

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