What is the role of fibric acid derivatives in the treatment of pediatric lipid disorders?

Updated: Jun 27, 2019
  • Author: Henry J Rohrs, III, MD; Chief Editor: Stuart Berger, MD  more...
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These drugs inhibit lipoprotein production and increase lipoprotein clearance. Similar to niacin, fibric acid derivatives are useful in treating various dyslipidemias, including HLP types IIA, IIB, IV, and V. Although fibric acid derivatives are effective in adults for the treatment of type IIA phenotypes, the authors do not use fibric acid derivatives in type IIA HLPs because of the effectiveness and safety of statins. The authors reserve the use of fibric acid derivatives for persistent hypertriglyceridemia. Safety and efficacy data on fibric acid derivatives in children are limited.

The table below lists doses and FDA-approved indications in adults. In adults, common toxicities include myalgias, myositis, myopathy, rhabdomyolysis, liver toxicity, gallstones, and glucose intolerance. Gemfibrozil is less likely to cause gallstones than clofibrate (discontinued from the US market). ALT levels should be monitored every 3 months in children treated with gemfibrozil. The authors have only limited experience with fenofibrate but have used gemfibrozil safely and effectively in the clinic.

Table 6. FDA-Approved Uses and Doses of Fibric Acid Derivatives (Open Table in a new window)

Drug Name

Approved Indications

Adult Dose

Gemfibrozil (Lopid)

HLP types IIB, IV, and V

600 mg orally twice daily (ie, 1200 mg total daily dose) 30 min before meals (ie, before breakfast and dinner)

Fenofibrate (Tricor)

HLP types IIA, IIB, IV and V

Initial: 67 mg/d orally; not to exceed 67 mg orally twice daily

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